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Sunset sets the table for state

Sunset's boys prep for what they hope is yet another 6A title run


by: MILES VANCE - FAST FRIENDS - Sunset's Jonathan Zoucha (right) shakes hands with teammate Cameron Stitt after Zoucha broke Stitt's Metro League record in winning the 200-yard freestyle race at Saturday's Metro League District Meet at Tualatin Hills Aquatic Center.

BEAVERTON — The Sunset boys swim team was determined to leave its mark on the 2013 Metro League District Swim Meet.

But after Saturday’s championships at Tualatin Hills Aquatic Center, the Apollos might just get themselves arrested for assault and battery.

Sunset won seven of the meet’s 11 events, set five meet records in the process, and rolled to victory for the second straight year, this time finishing with 461 points, while second-place Southridge finished 135 points back in second with 326 points.

For the Apollos — the two-time defending Class 6A state champs — their margin of victory and point total was the greatest at the Metro district meet since 2008 when Jesuit scored 487 points to second-place Westview’s 302.

“This is our last year and we’ve got a lot of seniors leaving so it’s our last time to try and do everything we can to leave a lasting record for Sunset,” said Sunset senior Cole Hurwitz, winner of the both the 200-yard individual medley and the 100 breaststroke, and winner of both in new meet-record times.by: MILES VANCE - TOP THREE - Sunset's (from left) Kasey Kwong, Cole Hurwitz and Jordan Hurwitz grabbed the top three spots in the 100-yard breaststroke during Saturday's Metro League District Swim Meet at Tualatin Hills Aquatic Center.

The records “get us really pumped up and our team excited for the state meet next weekend,” added Sunset junior Jonathan Zoucha, winner of the 200 freestyle in another meet-record time.

That state meet — set for Friday and Saturday at Mt. Hood Community College — is the next goal for the senior-laden Apollos, who posted 17 top-five finishes at district. Preliminaries at the Class 6A state meet begin at 6:30 p.m. Friday, while championship finals are scheduled to begin at 5:45 p.m. Saturday.

The Apollos kicked off Saturday’s championship in fine fashion with Tristan Furnary, Cole Hurwitz, Zoucha and Cameron Stitt winning the 200 medley relay at 1 minute, 35.03 seconds, beating the 2009 record of 1:38.61 set by Jesuit’s Sam Conchuratt, Jacob Bieze, Connor McCarroll and Chris Ontkean.

“Earlier, we were figuring out which combinations would be best and we figured that one would probably be it with Tristan in the backstroke and me in the fly,” said Zoucha. “It did pretty well.”

Zoucha came back in the day’s second race, the 200 freestyle, to win again, outdueling Stitt — his senior teammate and the reigning Metro and Class 6A state champ in the event — to win in 1:39.62. That time broke the meet record of 1:40.51 that Stitt set last year and was also faster than Stitt’s winning state time of 1:40.07.

“Yesterday was just ‘Keep it easy. Keep it long,’ then race fast today,” Zoucha said. “All I knew was I was just sprinting as hard as I could at the finish.”

Stitt also broke his own meet record in finishing second to Zoucha with a time of 1:40.17.

“He swam a great race, but we’ll get to race again in a week,” Stitt said. “We always go back and forth in the 200 free at club meets about who’s going to win it.”

The Apollos muscled up for another 1-2 finish in the 200 individual medley, with Cole Hurwitz setting a third meet record at 1:53.20 and teammate Kasey Kwong taking second at 1:55.12. Hurwitz’s victory broke the 2007 record of 1:53.65 set by Jesuit’s Garth Summers.

“It was definitely a fun swim. There was a lot of competition,” Hurwitz said. Kwong “had a great start. He had a great IM. He was on me the whole time and I had to pick it up on the backstroke. That’s where I had to make my move a bit.”

Next up, Jordan Hurwitz took third in the 50 free at 21.97, and Zoucha grabbed second and teammate Joshua Noll fourth in the 100 butterfly at 50.84 and 54.97 respectively.

Stitt put the Apollos back in the winner’s circle in the 500 freestyle, where he broke his own meet record from a year earlier with a winning time of 4:32.10. His 2012 district mark was 4:32.29.

“To be honest, I didn’t really feel great,” Stitt admitted. “But we haven’t rested at all and we still had practice this morning so it wasn’t a huge surprise that I didn’t feel great. After I didn’t get (first) in the 200, this was my last chance so I wanted it.”

Noll scored again in the 500, placing fifth there at 4:56.67.

Next up, the Apollos’ 200 freestyle relay team of Kwong, Calder Dorn, Cole Hurwitz and Jordan Hurwitz grabbed second to Southridge with a time of 1:28.91.

Furnary, a freshman, played his part in the Apollos’ big win next, racing to victory in the 100 backstroke with a time of 50.95, while teammate Blake Hulstrom took fifth there at 56.49.

“I felt pretty good. High school meets are a lot more relaxed so I can have a lot of fun,” Furnary said. “I’m really looking forward to (state).”

Amazingly, Sunset saved its best for last, posting a 1-2-3 finish with another meet record in the breaststroke, then winning the day’s final event — the 400 freestyle relay — with yet another impressive meet record.

In the breaststroke, Cole Hurwitz broke his own meet record by almost a second, winning in 56.68, while Jordan Hurwitz grabbed second at 58.09 and Kwong took third with a 59.03.

And finally, in the 400 free relay, Sunset’s Furnary, Jordan Hurwitz, Zoucha and Stitt went 3:09.49 to break the 2006 meet record set by Westview’s Steven Horvath, Carlos Nunez, Morgon Henderson-Kunz and Alex Godvin’s 3:12.23.

“The four years we’ve had have been a really good time for us and we want to leave it on a good note and have a lot of fun our last year,” Cole Hurwitz added.

To see a complete photo gallery from this meet, please go to milesvance.exposuremanager.com.



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