Murray successfully defended its boys' and girls' swimming titles, making it three straight in each category, as the Spartans swam to victory in Saturday's second and final day of the 3A state meet.
And while the boys were rarely challenged in the meet at Brigham Young University, the Murray girls eked out a narrow victory over Ogden in one of the most closely contested competitions in recent memory.
"To win a team championshiop, it takes a total team effort," said Murray Coach Larry Swim. "I pulled everyone aside and told them it was my most satisfying win ever . . . . Everyone contributed, everyone came through."
Ogden Coach Mick Mikolash agreed that the Spartan girls' depth did in his Tigers. "Murray is tough. They just kept coming at you and at you," he said. "But we took six of the 11 first places; I can't expect more than that."
And add to that two more top honors for the Ogden girls' team - double winner Alissa Tribe as top swimmer and Mikolash as the top coach.
In the girls' team race, Murray and Ogden were followed by Carbon, Springville and Tooele.
Murray turned the tables on the Tigers, trailing by one point after Friday's opening day of competition before winning by five points. Ogden had led by as many as 16 and 24 points during Saturday's events, but Murray had three swimmers to Ogden's none in the 100-yard breaststroke to start the turnaround.
Ogden reportedly trailed by 11 going into the final 400 free relay, with the Tiger squad taking first as expected. However, Murray placed fourth, earning just enough points to ensure the team title. At first, the margin was believed to be a mere one point, but a subsequent scoring correction made it a final five-point difference between the two teams.
Murray won the boys' team title, with the only race really being for runner-up honors. The Spartans amassed 192 team points in the two-day meet, challenged only momentarily when Springville cut the margin to 18 points midway thorugh Saturday's events.
Cedar finished second with 136 points, while Tooele, Springville and Provo rounded out the top five with 125, 118 and 108, respectively.
Cedar also earned the post-meet boys' honors, with dual-winner John Weiland receiving the Top Male Swimmer Award and Redmen Coach Dick Coston taking the trophy as the top boys' coach.
As for the individual events, winning Saturday was twice as nice for several swimmers who claimed their second first-place medals in as many days:
- West freshman Kristen Prier took top honors in the 100 free, having won the 200 free the day before. In Saturday's 100-free prelims, Prier's 54.69 time was .87 seconds shy of a 3A state record. She bettered her time in the evening's finals, but only by .01 with a winning mark of 54.68.
- Springville's John Bate edged Murray's Paul Cazier by .04 seconds in the 100 free, 48.28 to 48.32. The 1-2 finish mirrored Friday's finish between Bate and Cazier in the 50 free, when Bate finished .01 seconds better.
- Ogden's Tribe was a double winner for the second-straight year, adding her championship in Saturday's 100 fly to her 50 free title Friday.
- Ogden sophomore Monae Marshall earned her second individual first-place finish, winning Saturday in the 500 free after taking similar honors in Friday's 200 IM.
- Cedar City's Weiland finished first with a time of 4:51.78 in a thrilling, to-the-wire 500 free. Provo's Daryl Wise was 1.4 seconds behind at 4:53.78, while Sky View's Ian Troxler took third with a time of 4:56.54.
While they weren't dual winners, a couple other individualists merited mention.
Larissa Lubromudrov, a sophomore from 1A Rowland Hall-St. Marks, stepped up to the 3A competition and took the girls' 100 back with a time of 1:03.47. She becomes the school's first-ever individual titlist.
And Cedar City's Joe Hughes earned the meet's only qualification for Junior Nationals, breaking the 52.39-second standard in both the morning prelims and evening finals. His finals time was 51.98.
Also, Timpview's Jason Swenson won the 100 breaststroke at 1:02.25; Judge Memorial's Nick Satovick took first in the 100 backstroke with a time of 55.71; and Provo's Eric Eaves claimed the boys' diving title with a score of 326.10.