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Swimming: North Marion's Andy Pine wins two state medals at 4A/3A/2A/1A finals

The senior takes runner-up honors in the boys 50-yard freestyle race and adds a fourth-place finish in the 100 free.


by: JEFF GOODMAN / PAMPLIN MEDIA GROUP - North Marion senior Andy Pine competes in the finals of the boys 100-yard freestyle race Feb. 22 during the Class 4A/3A/2A/1A state championships at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham. Pine earned two OSAA medals.GRESHAM — As Andy Pine swam a few cool-down laps in the practice pool, coach Chere Moore reminisced about how far the North Marion senior had come.

As a ninth-grader, she remembered, Pine lost a tiebreaker for the last spot in the district finals of one of his individual events.

Yet here he was at the Class 4A/3A/2A/1A championships three years later, wrapping up his high school swimming career with two state medals Feb. 21-22 at Mt. Hood Community College.

“He was a squirrely freshman,” Moore said. “He’s turned out to be a fine young man.”

Pine turned out to be a talented athlete in the water, too.

His performance at the state meet was highlighted by his runner-up effort in the boys 50-yard freestyle race, where he clocked a time of 23.04 seconds.

Pine had posted the fastest time in the prelims Feb. 21 but finished behind La Grande sophomore Bryce Ebel (22.65) in the finals.

“They always say the silver medalist is the unhappiest because he was so close, but I’m just happy to be here,” Pine said. “Taking second is a huge accomplishment.”

Pine also reached the podium in the 100 free, logging a 51.40 to take fourth place behind Newport senior Tanner Schipper (49.75), Philomath junior Patrick Williamson (50.34) and Madras junior Bryce Williams (51.00).

In previous seasons, Pine had competed for the Huskies primarily in the 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke races. But his role at North Marion changed following the departure of Noah Norris, who transferred to Wilsonville.

“I knew I had to step up,” Pine said.

Pine focused more attention on the sprints in his senior campaign, taking second place behind Ebel in the district-meet 50 free and finishing as the district runner-up behind Williams in the 100 free.

He also helped the Huskies set a school record in the 200 free relay, anchoring the quartet to a third-place district finish with a time of 1 minute 37.22 seconds.

The relay squad, which also included seniors Kyle Torian and Austin Dobaj as well as sophomore Noel Medina, advanced to the state meet and clocked a 1:37.35 to finish in 11th in the prelims.

The same group also competed in the 400 free relay, taking 12th in the prelims with a 3:44.35.

Torian swam a 58.82 in the prelims of the boys 100 butterfly, taking ninth.

North Marion tallied eight points to finish in 12th place in the boys team standings, where Cottage Grove (52) edged Newport (47) and Madras (43) for the title. Medford-St. Mary’s (48) won the girls competition, clipping North Bend (46) and Sweet Home (42).

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Veronica Norris just missed out on chances to compete in the finals of her two individual events.

She was seventh in the state prelims of the girls 50 free with a time of 26.23 seconds, finishing just 0.13 seconds behind Valley Catholic junior Hailey Moraes.

She then logged a 1:04.67 to end up in seventh in the girls 100 backstroke prelims, touching the wall less than a second after Madras junior Aurora Gerhardt (1:03.91).

The top six swimmers from the prelims advance to the finals in each event.

“It’s tough, especially when you’re a senior and you want to be here,” Moore said.

Norris also anchored the Huskies’ 400 free relay squad, which was 10th in the prelims with a 4:14.97. The quartet also included juniors Jami Seevers and Coby Lemon as well as sophomore Katie Palmer. 

Lemon did not advance to the championship finals of the girls 100 butterfly after winning a district title in the event. She clocked a 1:11.26 to finish in 12th in the prelims, trimming nearly two seconds off the time she recorded at the district meet.

Lemon qualified for the state meet despite missing the start of the season to recover from knee surgery.

“She kind of surprised me,” Moore said. “We’ll see what she can do next year with a whole season.”

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Area product Noah Norris finished his first season on the Wilsonville swimming team with two state medals.

The sophomore, who transferred from North Marion, took second place in the Class 5A boys 50-yard freestyle race and added a third-place finish in the 100 butterfly.

In the 50 free, Norris logged a time of 21.80 seconds to finish a second behind Bend-Summit junior Tommy Brewer (20.80). Norris was a Northwest Oregon Conference district champion in the event with a 21.75.

In the 100 fly, Norris touched the wall in 52.64 seconds to end up behind Hillsboro-Liberty senior Anton Loncar (50.01) and Springfield senior Carlos Hunnicutt (50.05).

Norris, who won two individual medals as a North Marion freshman at last year’s 4A/3A/2A/1A meet, was also a member of the Wildcats’ state-qualifying 200 free relay squad this year.

The quartet did not advance to the event finals, clocking a 1:37.00 in the prelims to finish in 10th out of 12 teams. Portland-Wilson went on to win the title in 1:29.44.

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AT A GLANCE

Class 4A/3A/2A/1A state swimming championships

Feb. 21-22 at Mt. Hood Community College (Gresham)

BOYS: 1. Cottage Grove, 52; 2. Newport, 47; 3. Madras, 43; 4. La Salle Prep, 26; 5. La Grande, 19; 6. Valley Catholic, 15; 7. Seaside, 14; 7. North Bend, 14; 9. Philomath, 13; 10. Tillamook, 10; 10. Sisters, 10; 12. Baker-Powder Valley, 8; 12. North Marion, 8; 14. Riverdale, 7; 15. Blanchet Catholic, 6; 15. Salem Academy, 6; 17. Sweet Home, 4; 17. Phoenix, 4; 19. St. Mary’s, 2.

GIRLS: 1. St. Mary’s, 48; 2. North Bend, 46; 3. Sweet Home, 42; 4. La Grande, 32; 5. Henley, 30; 6. Salem Academy, 24; 7. Marshfield, 23; 8. Valley Catholic, 14.5; 9. Cascade Christian, 14; 10. Ridgeview, 10; 11. Sisters, 9.5; 12. Madras, 9; 13. Philomath, 3; 13. Stayton, 13.




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