Disclaimer: Dolfin Swim of the Week is not meant to be a conclusive selection of the best overall swim of the week, but rather one Featured Swim to be explored in deeper detail. The Dolfin Swim is an opportunity to take a closer look at the context of one of the many fast swims this week, perhaps a swim that slipped through the cracks as others grabbed the headlines, or a race we didn’t get to examine as closely in the flood of weekly meets.
It doesn’t get much better than this. Utah’s 3A High School State Championships came down to three teams in the final relay, with the meet ultimately decided by just a single point.
The meet was drenched in drama from the start. Judge Memorial School and Union High jumped to an early lead, with Judge Memorial blowing out the field for a medley relay win and Union taking second. But Richfield High used incredible depth to climb back into the meet, and caught a big break when both Judge Memorial and Union missed the A final of the 200 free relay. Richfield was second in that event to surge to a 9-point lead over Union, who beat Judge Memorial for 9th. Judge Memorial had almost fallen out of it by that point, and with no scoring backstrokers, trailed by 37 after that event with two events remaining.
But Judge Memorial went 1st and 4th in breaststroke, and suddenly the meet was in the win:
Scores After 100 Breaststroke (One Event Remaining)
- Richfield – 184
- Union – 179
- Judge Memorial – 172
To make things even more dramatic, all three teams had stars swimming the final relay. Judge Memorial had the same foursome that won the 200 medley relay: Seth Overman, Ben Yarrish, Nico Morton and 200 IM/100 breast champ Buddy Yanelli.
Union countered with the same four that were second in the medley: Carson Stewart, Taylor Hawkins, William Bertoch and Dylan Hawkins.
Richfield had already used standouts Grant Kling and Levi Maxfield twice, but did have Parker Hunt and Mac Ogden from the runner-up 200 free relay.
There was no stopping Judge Memorial, which got a 51.45 leadoff from Overman and a 51.4 split from Morton to win in a dominating 3:28.85.
But Union held on for second, thanks in large part to 52.8 and 53.0 splits from Bertoch and Dylan Hawkins. That kept the surging Judge Memorial at bay, leaving Union a single point ahead.
When Richfield touched in 6th, what was a five-point lead evaporated, and Union was crowned the state champs. Judge Memorial’s furious comeback netted them second place, just two points ahead of Richfield.
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