GRESHAM Though the Century boys did not quite match their female counterparts with a championship trophy at the state swim meet, they still made plenty of noise at Mt. Hood Community College last Friday and Saturday.
Led by Liam Metzsch, who claimed an individual state title in the 50-yard freestyle, the Jaguars boys finished a highly respectable seventh in the team standings. Scoring 73 points, Century finished just six points back of sixth-place David Douglas.
With 179 points, Sunset scored its fourth consecutive title, prevailing over Metro League rivals Jesuit (169) and Southridge (123).
In the fast and furious 50 free a race that allows for no margin of error Metzsch won going away thanks to great execution. His time of 20.96 was more than three-quarters of a second faster than that of runner-up Matt Braun of Southridge, who went 21.77.
I mainly focused on the dive and the turn, and I felt like I hammered the turn pretty good, said Metzsch, whose time was just a few tenths of a second slower than his career best. It was fun.
With that winning time, Metzsch became one of just 11 boys ever, regardless of classification, to dip under 21 seconds in the 50 free final at the Oregon high school state meet.
Metzsch also took eighth place in the 100 backstroke in 52.52 and contributed to two championship finals relays. In the 200 medley relay, Metzsch teamed with Josh Berquist, Brant Edwards and Josh Galbraith to finish fourth in 1:38.78. That same quartet rounded out the meet with a sixth-place result in the 400 free relay (3:17.53).
I felt it was really good, said Metzsch, a junior. The relays were pretty good, making finals. I was pretty surprised about that.
And in all, with four swims on both days of the meet and an individual title, it was quite the state meet debut for Metzsch, who belongs to the Tualatin Hills Swim Club but had not participated in high school swimming prior to this season.
I feel pretty excited for next year, Metzsch said. Hopefully Ill get to do the 100 free.
Galbraith, Edwards and Berquist added individual points for Century. A senior competing in his first state meet, Galbraith won the consolation final in the 50 free to finish seventh overall in 22.25, the same time he posted in the preliminaries. Berquist chipped in a ninth-place result in the 100 breaststroke in 1:01.50, and Edwards added a 12th-place finish in the 100 butterfly (55.41).
Two other swimmers from Hillsboro-area schools participated in the meet and qualified for second swims. Hilhi freshman Matthew Arnold took ninth in the 500 free in 4:52.48. Glencoes Logan Frank was 12th in that event in 5:05.77. The junior also finished 13th in the 200 free (1:49.51).