Fast swims and big time drops played prominent roles in the Region 9 swim championships, which concluded Friday evening inside the Sand Hallow Aquatic Center.
Because of the UHSAA's decision to move the thee St. George schools Snow Canyon, Pine View and Dixie up to 4A in the middle of the realignment cycle, Region 9 organizers scrambled to find a way to stage the region meet between the 3A and 4A schools. In the end, they decided to have all the Region 9 schools swim together before separating them by classification afterward.
Accordingly, there were four team winners. Cedar City swept the awards in 3A, beating out neighbor Canyon View on the boys side and girls side. In 4A, Snow Canyon's boys team rolled to the win, while Dixie's girls team edged Pine View.
"We were all kind of pumped up, and we had some great swims," said Krissy Payton, the head coach of all three St. George schools.
From top to bottom, most of the individual winners dropped time. That included Snow Canyon star Joe Beutler, who registered a lifetime best in the 200 free. Beutler finished the event in 1:43.34.
DJ Payton and JJ Jones of Snow Canyon also both netted two 4A individual wins on the boys side, while Pine View's Deanna Dillard, Snow Canyon's Stacia Madsen and Dixie's Loni Bowen stood out on the girls side.
Gabby Mucci (200 free and 100 breast) and Melissa Morris (50 free and 100 free) each won twice individually to help lead Cedar's girls team. On the other hand, Ryan Corry (50 free and 100 free) and Gregory Barnes (100 back and 100 breast) won their events on the boys side for the Redmen.