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Swimming showdown goes to LO

After being postponed due to weather conditions, the annual Civil War swim meet took place on Tuesday and lived up to its billing.

Lake Oswego won the boys and the girls competitions but coaches from both teams were very pleased with the swims that were turned in. The stage is now set for the district meet, which will take place next Friday and Saturday.

'We had a meeting beforehand and I just told everyone that there's a reason this is called the Civil War and made sure everyone knew this was for the league title,' Lakers coach Don King said.

The girls event was the closer of the two with the Lakers winning 96-72. Lake Oswego captured the first three events, starting with the 200 medley relay. McKenzie Luick then won the 200 freestyle with Anne Barrington finishing in second place.

Jeli Nixt followed with a victory in the 200 individual medley while Lakeridge's Brittany Anderson finished second.

Lakeridge picked up its first victory of the evening in the 50 freestyle where Lydia Burris swam close to her best time. She didn't have much time to celebrate, however.

Moments later she was in the pool again and picked up her second individual win of the night in the 100 butterfly, finishing in exactly one minute.

'Lydia had fallen behind in that race but then really kicked it into gear and finished strong,' Pacer co-coach Justin Lindsey said.

Nixt then won her second event of the evening in the 100 freestyle and Lakeridge countered with Emily Lightcap's victory in the 500 freestyle.

Lake Oswego won the last three events of the night as Alex Farrar captured the 100 backstroke and Luick won the 100 breaststroke.

The Lakers also placed first and second in the 400 freestyle relay when Devon O'Leary turned in a personal-best swim on her team's final leg to touch out her Lakeridge opponent.

'Our relays were phenomenal. Devon came in faster than she ever has before,' King said.

Lakeridge freshman Julia Dahl turned in one of her better meets of the year. She anchored her team's winning 200 freestyle relay team and was also second in the 100 backstroke. Brittany Anderson also turned in solid swims for the Pacers in the breaststroke and I.M.

'Julia turned in some big-time swims. Overall it was a very solid performance,' Lindsey said.

For Lake Oswego, Kelsey Rueppel turned in a stellar swim in the 100 freestyle, taking second place in a closely contested race.

The Lake Oswego boys won their competition 104-63 and only lost one event.

Cody Deacon took home victories in the 200 I.M. and the 100 breaststroke, Issac Hayden won the 100 and 200 freestyle events and Brendan Liu was also a dual winner, taking home the 100 backstroke and the 500 freestyle.

The Lakers also swept the relays to pick up valuable points. Anthony Brost turned in a stellar 50 freestyle to win that event and David Johnston took second in the 100 butterfly.

'I think this was one of the best meets I've seen in terms of teamwork,' King said.

For Lakeridge, the team's lone victory came in the 100 butterfly when Jason Lou won in a time of 59.53.

'Jason's always dependable for us. He also had a great 200 freestyle,' Lindsey said.

On his birthday, Kyle Maloney dropped a second and a half in his leg of the 200 freestyle relay. Jason Cook turned in a best time in the 500 freestyle, cracking six minutes and Joey Bora also set a personal record in the 100 breaststroke.

The teams will now start to taper leading up to the district meet and will, once again, be expected to dominate the event.

The Lake Oswego girls may have the best shot to place high at state as a number of their swimmers have put up times that are amongst the best in the state.

'We're crossing our fingers for a top-four finish,' King said.