MCMINNVILLE — West Albany High’s girls 200-yard freestyle relay team turned in a record-breaking performance during Saturday’s finals of the Greater Valley Conference swimming championships.
Eve Vetter, Natalie Baas, Taylor Kelley and Bailey Dickerson teamed up to place second in the event with a time of 1 minute, 41.97 seconds at McMinnville Aquatic Center, besting the previous school record of 1:42.03 set in 2013. South Salem won the relay in 1:40.67.
The same Bulldogs foursome also took second in the 200 medley relay at 1:51.73. West Albany achieved automatically qualifying times in both relays for next week’s 6A state championships at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham.
All of Saturday’s individual event and relay winners punched their tickets to state.
The Bulldogs won the GVC girls meet with 313 points to beat out South Salem (287), West Salem (281.5), Forest Grove (276) and McMinnville (272). West Albany’s Babette Romancier was named the district’s girls coach of the year.
South Salem captured the boys team title with 387 points. The Bulldogs were fourth at 242.
Vetter also set a new individual school record in the 100 butterfly, finishing second in 59.68. It was an automatic state qualifying time.
Dickerson, a junior, placed first in the 50 freestyle with a time of 24.75. She was second in 100 backstroke in 58.11.
During Friday’s preliminaries, Dickerson broke her own district record in the 50 free by finishing in 24.69.
On the boys side, West junior Kieran Van Horsen finished second in the 200 free (1:50.32) and third in the 100 free (49.33). Braxton Reece was second in the 100 butterfly at 55.78.
Reece, Van Horsen, Jaxon Shufelberger and Eric Formiller teamed up to finish second in the 200 free relay at 1:32.59.
Sweet Home’s boys and girls defended their team titles at the 4A/3A/2A/1A Special District 3 championships.
The boys finished with a team score of 257 to edge second-place Salem Academy’s 242 at Albany Community Pool. The girls (274) also held off the Crusaders (253).
“We didn’t have many guys so we had to have some real high performances,” Sweet Home coach Doug Peargin said. “We had finalists in every event, and that’s the only way we could’ve done it.”
Each individual event and relay winner automatically qualifies for next weekend’s state championships. Sweet Home captured boys and girls team titles a season ago.
Philomath’s boys placed third Saturday with 178 points while the girls were fourth at 142.
The foursome of Sarah Hewitt, Lauren Yon, Mia Davis and Megan Hager teamed up to win the 200 medley relay (1:55.2) and 400 freestyle relay (3:43.9) for Sweet Home.
Yon topped the field in the 200 IM (2:11.8) and 500 free (5:13.6) while Hager won the 50 free (24.8) and 100 free (53.7). Davis was the 200 free champion with a time of 2:05.6.
In the boys meet, Sweet Home’s 200 medley relay team of Bradley Wolthuis, Rawlins Lupoli, Roland Lupoli and Seth Curtis placed first in 2:45.6.
Rawlins Lupoli picked up individual wins in the 200 IM (2:06.9) and 100 breaststroke (1:02.7); Roland Lupoli won the 50 free (22.4) and 100 free (51.0).
Philomath’s James Dye took first in the 500 free with a time of 5:18.9.