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MountainStar Healthcare Star Athletes of week 18 in Utah high school sports

Boys Basketball

Dylan Jones, Pleasant Grove (Jr.)

The Vikings are off to an impressive 7-0 start this season, and a big reason why has been the contributions of junior Dylan Jones.

The 6-foot-5 guard leads Pleasant Grove in scoring averaging 15.1 points, in addition to leading the team with 2.6 steals per game. He’s second in rebounding at 4.6 rebounds per game.

“Dylan’s hard work this offseason has elevated his game to an incredible level. He went from primarily a catch and shoot guy as a sophomore, to someone who is leading our team in almost every statistical category this season. He is a very humble and classy young man,” said Pleasant Grove coach Randy McAllister.

Last Wednesday Jones poured in a career-high 40 points in Pleasant Grove’s 92-57 win over Jordan.

Girls Basketball

Presley Chapell, South Sevier (Sr.)

South Sevier senior center Presley Chapell has been the catalyst to a 4-0 start for the Rams this season.

A returning first team all-stater, Chapell is averaging 15.8 points and 12.3 rebounds this season.

Last Saturday in a 46-34 win over Crimson Cliffs, Chapell recorded a double-double with 17 points and 14 rebounds. The night before against Manti, she recorded another double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds.

“Presley is an anchor for our team. Her defensive presence on the floor allows her teammates to dig in and defend hard. She loves to compete on the offensive side as well. If it’s scoring, rebounding or passing she is there for our team,” said South Sevier coach Tracy Johnson.

Boys Swimming

Tanner Nelson, Bingham (Sr.)

Senior Tanner Nelson joined Bingham’s swim team for the first time this year, and he’s already making a big impact according to coach Rachael Gill.

“We’re very happy he made the choice to join the team this year. Not only has he broke many records and led our relays to victory, he is a kind and humble teammate,” said Gill.

Last week in a meet against American Fork and Woods Cross, Nelson posted the best time in the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:41.48. It’s nine seconds faster than any other swimmer in Utah.

He also owns the second-best 100 breaststroke time in the state.

“We still have many weeks to go this season and some big goals to achieve. We’re both hoping he’s able to break some state records come February at 6A state,” said Gill.

Girls Swimming

Helena Djunic, Park City (Sr.)

Has been a key contributor for Park City swimming for the past four years, and the University of Hawaii commit is excited to end her career on a high note.

Already this year she owns the best 50 freestyle time in Utah at 24.09, and the third-best 100 free time in 53.94.

“Helena is a tremendously talented student athlete. She has been a staple of consistency and leadership for Park City all four years. I have been so grateful for the opportunity to work with her and watch her continually grow and improve, both in and out of the pool,” said Park City coach Mike Werner. “She is a fantastic leader, teammate and we all have learned so much from her example.”

Boys Wrestling

Brady Merkley, Uintah (Jr.)

A two-time state champion, Brady Merkley appears well on his way to a possible third-straight title this season.

Last weekend at the Christmas Clash Invite at Westlake, Merkley won the 138-pound title, which included a win over Westlake’s three-time state champion Jacob Finlinson in the final, 2-0.

He also beat ALA’s talented Lukus Carrillo in the semifinals.

So far this season Merkley has put together a 9-0 record.