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3A-5 district swimming: PHU's four-digit meet feat repeats

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Fri. October 28, 2011 | Bob Putnam | Email

PALM HARBOR — Last month, on an extraordinary night of swimming, Palm Harbor University’s boys and girls swim teams scored more than 1,000 points combined at the Pinellas County Athletic Conference meet.

It seemed unlikely that total would be achieved again, especially in the postseason. After all, the Class 3A, District 5 meet is one of the best in the state, filled with plenty of fast swimmers.

And yet Friday, the Hurricanes reached 1,000 points — again. In fact, they surpassed their total from the conference meet and won their fifth straight boys and girls district team titles.

PHU’s boys scored 537 to beat Plant by 276. In the girls meet, the Hurricanes outscored the Panthers, 505.5-312.

“I didn’t think it would be possible to reach 1,000 points again,” PHU coach Lisa Bitting said. “It’s very satisfying because everything that needed to come together, did.”

The Hurricanes’ boys had contributions from nearly everyone. David Morgan won the 200 IM (1:56.29) and 100 breaststroke (59.92).

Jason Williams took first in the 50 freestyle (22.08). Zach Perrotti was a champion in the 100 butterfly (52.80). And  Ryan McRae won the 100 free (48.39).

The Hurricanes also dominated the relay events. Their 200 medley relay of McRae, Morgan, Perrotti and Williams won in 1:39.75 and their 200 free relay of Williams, Shaun VanHuyssteen, Perrotti and Morgan won in 1:29.45.

Clearwater’s Nick Alexiou won the 500 free (4:36.91) and 200 free (1:40.49). Northeast’s Georgi Krastev was a champion in the 100 back (53.06). Countryside’s 400 free relay of Richard Willsey, Gary Lush, Michael Lombardo and Ryan Peters won in 3:19.01.

On the girls side, Palm Harbor University’s Michelle Turek won the 100 free (53.79) and tied with Countryside’s Summer Finke for first in the 200 free (1:54.70). Turek also teamed with Abbey King, Katherine Mayer and Rachael Freeman to win the 400 free relay in 3:42.49. Finke also won the 500 free (5:04.06).

East Lake’s Sydney Pickrem won the 100 breast (1:04.85), the 200 IM (2:06.09) and teamed with Raina Peterson, Emily Jacobs and Annika Smith to take first in the 200 free relay in 1:41.33. Northeast’s A.J. Jones won the 100 back (1:00.33).

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