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High school swimming: Judge outperforms Park City in 3A swimming

Juan Diego's Kelsey Leeson reacts to finishing in first place in the 100-yard freestyle event in the 3A Swimming Championships.
Juan Diego's Kelsey Leeson reacts to finishing in first place in the 100-yard freestyle event in the 3A Swimming Championships.
August Miller, Deseret News

PROVO — After finishing the first day of the state swim meet with just a slim, eight-point advantage over Park City, the girls on the Judge swim team had their work cut out for them if they were going to finish the weekend as state champions.

They came through.

The Lady Bulldogs racked up 380 team points to the Miners' 372, winning by the same eight-point advantage they started the day with.

"We knew that Park City was going to have its A-game," Judge head coach Matt Finnigan said. "They have so many good kids … we knew they were going to be awesome. So we just figured we had to pretty much match everything they were going to give."

Finnigan credited much of the Bulldogs' seventh championship in eight years to the attitude of the team. "They brought that (spirit) and then some. We had a motto today. It's three simple words: Never give up. And I think they took it to heart. We had all best times today, a lot of personal records throughout."

Lydia Jones led Judge with a first-place time of 5:27.29 in the 500 free, and the Bulldogs picked up big points in the 100 backstroke with three girls finishing in the top six. Meghan Brockmeyer came in third with a time of 1:04.92, and Sarin Karwande and Erica Azad placed fifth and sixth with times of 1:06.33 and 1:06.77, respectively.

The Miners had three individual champions, including Mia Greenwald, who blazed past the competition in the 100 fly with a time 59.63, more than three seconds faster than teammate and second-place finisher Ali Murphy. The Park City 400-free relay team, which was made up of Marissa Bell, Sara Testa, Hailey Shand and Greenwald, clocked in with a first-place of 3:45.64, and Shand, a sophomore, out-touched the others to win the 100 back.

"I feel so — I don't even have words to describe how I feel," Shand said of her 1:02.22 finish. "It's just so exhilarating. I wanted to win the 100 back so badly, so I just got in there and I just raced."

Although the Lady Miners didn't end the day at the top of the standings, the team was still proud of how well each person swam and of how many points they gained on the Bulldogs.

"I don't care that we got second because everyone did amazing," Shand said. "We were ahead of where we were supposed to be and everyone was losing time. Everyone did so well."

"When they should've lost to Judge by 80 points, they came back from that deficit," Park City coach John Harvey said of the heart of his girls' squad. "They were all just into it. They might be upset that they got second place, but their success is far greater than second place. They did amazing."

Kelsey Leeson of Juan Diego captured the 100-free championship with her time of 55.67, Wasatch swimmers Kristen Anderson, Kris Ranson, Mary Kathryn Brown and Veronica Hunsaker swam the 200-free relay in a first-place time of 1:42.43, and Emily Morris of Cedar won the 100 breaststroke, finishing in 1:09.62.

In the team standings, Wasatch, Desert Hills and Cedar rounded out the top five with scores of 275, 256 and 205, respectively.