SULPHUR —Jesuit had the perfect approach and made the first big move by beating Catholic High in the 200-yard medley relay.
The Blue Jays held a slim lead on the Bears for a portion of the Division I finals that concluded the Allstate Sugar Bowl/Louisiana High School Athletic Association Sugar Bowl State Swim meet Saturday night.
However, Catholic countered in the final seven events to claim its third Division I title in four seasons at the SPAR Aquatic Center.
“It was a great meet,” Jesuit coach Bret Hanemann said. “You couldn’t ask for any more from either team. When you go into a meet and everybody swims best times and you leave it in the pool, there’s nothing more you can ask.”
Catholic finished with 416 points, ahead of Jesuit at 388 and Mandeville at 225. It also was the second straight title for Catholic. Jesuit has the distinction of winning state swimming titles in 37 of the last 41 years.
St. Joseph’s Academy won its fourth straight Division I girls title with 420 points. Mandeville at 296 and Dominican at 261 followed. Like Hanemann, Mandeville coach Robert Fritscher stressed the positives of a second straight runner-up finish for the Skippers.
“What we wanted to do was compete on our own level,” Fritscher said. “We went in with a certain number score that we wanted. We didn’t swim as well yesterday as we did tonight. It was a good battle between us and Dominican. They’re a good young team, they’re coming and we know it.”
Catholic’s Colin Bone and St. Joseph’s Clayton Black claimed the top individual honors. Bone won the 200 and 100 freestyle races to claim Outstanding Boys Swimmer honors for the second straight season. He broke his own record in the 100 freestyle, posting an automatic All-American qualifying time of 45.06 seconds.
Black was voted the Outstanding Girls Swimmer after setting Division I and composite records by winning the 200 freestyle in 1:49.19. Her time also was an auto All-America mark and shattered the 14-year-old mark set by former Dominican star Jaclyn Faulkner.
Rummel’s Thomas Vanderbrok also was a double winner, taking top honors in the 200 individual medley in 1 minute, 55.57 seconds and the 100 backstroke in 52.39 seconds.
Jesuit’s victory in the 200 medley relay provided one of the meet’s highlights. The Blue Jays and Bears battled throughout the race with Jesuit winning in 1:36.67, just .19 ahead of Catholic.
From there, Jesuit got on a roll. Chris Simmons won the 50 freestyle in 21.08 and Cade Fuxan won the 100 butterfly in 51.25 seconds as the Blue Jays built their lead. Jesuit got its final individual victory from Michael Conrad, who won the 500 freestyle in 4:41.73.
The momentum shifted when Catholic returned the favor by edging Jesuit in the 200 freestyle relay, winning in a Division I record time of 1:25.17.
“I want to really credit Jesuit High School,” Catholic coach Doug Logsdon said. “They really brought in those first events. They pushed us.”
Mandeville also had individual winners in Lia Joslin, who won the 200 IM in 2:10.14 and Megan Loup, who won the 500 freestyle in 4:57.71. Fritscher also credited Denise Frantz, who returned from a summer surgery that could have ended her career to place second in the 100 breaststroke, finishing .52 out of first place.