The New Era - All about Sweet Home since 1929

By Scott Swanson
Of The New Era 

Sweet Home swimmers sweep district meet


February 14, 2017

BRANDON VASFARET lets out a yell after the Sweet Home boys missed setting a school record in the 200 Freestyle Relay by five-one hundredths of a second Saturday at the District 3 Swimming Championships.

It’s been a bit of a bumpy ride this season for Sweet Home’s swim teams, dealing with a shortage of numbers on the boys side, illness and weather-related cancelations.

But things finally came together Saturday, Feb. 11, for the Huskies as both the boys and girls won the 4A/3A/2A/1A Special District 3 championships. They qualified for state in all three relays on both sides and are sending seven girls in seven events, and five boys in seven events – 20 of 22 events. Eight of those qualifiers will be No. 1 seeds, including four relays.

“We swam our hearts out. This is one of the better district meets that we’ve had since I’ve been coaching at Sweet Home,” said Coach Doug Peargin, who has coached the Huskies for 43 years. “By winning 19 of 22 events, we’ll be sending quite a few kids to state.”

Senior Nathan Hager said the Husky boys, who finished second to Salem Academy last year, were hoping they had enough depth to get the job done.

“We knew it was going to be pretty close,” he said. “We knew we had a good shot. We don’t have a lot of middle kids, like Salem Academy does.

“I honestly thought we could do it and we did.”

Freshman Megan Hager delivered big for a loaded girls squad, swimming the 50 Freestyle in 24.78 to beat teammate Lauren Yon’s school record set last year. Hager then came back and won the 100 Freestyle (53.83).

“I was really happy with it,” she said of her performance, which was not only the high school record but her own personal best time. “I was really hoping I would , but I honestly wasn’t thinking I was going to. I could probably do better at state next week.”

Hager is the top seed in the 50, by nearly half a second and the 100 Freestyle, by 2½ seconds, at the 4A/3A/2A/1A State Championships Friday and Saturday, Feb. 17-18, at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham.

Yon, a junior, won the 200 Individual Medley in 2:14.00 and the 100 Breaststroke in 1:09.66. She is seeded first in the breaststroke, which will be a new state event for her, and second in the 200 IM, which she won last year, behind La Grande freshman Riana Scott, by three-quarters of a second.

Senior Elea Hewitt is the 11th seed in the 100 Breaststroke after finishing fourth behind Yon.

Seniors Lucie Davis and Jessica Coats won their seventh and eighth individual district titles, Davis taking the 200 Freestyle (1:58.67) and the 500 Freestyle (5:11.52) and Coats the 100 Butterfly (1:01.12) and the 100 Backstroke (1:02.41).

“I was really happy with my times,” said Coats, who will be seeking her first state title after taking second in the butterfly last year. She is seeded third in both races for the state meet. Junior Mia Davis is seeded ninth in the butterfly after placing fourth at district.

Lucie Davis is seeded first in the 500 Freestyle, half a second ahead of Sisters freshman Lydia Bartlett, and second in the 200 Freestyle, which she’s won each of the past three years, behind Marshfield sophomore Anna Hutchins – by half a second.

“I have some plans,” Davis said, referring to this weekend. “I’m really excited for it. I’ve trained really hard and I know what I have to do. I’m healthy.”

Other Huskies qualifying for those races are Sara Hewitt, seeded fifth in the 500, and Mia Davis, seeded ninth in that race.

Sweet Home’s girls are seeded first in both freestyle relays and fourth in the 200 Medley Relay.

On the boys side, the relays were the big story of the day.

Rowland Lupoli, Rawlins Lupoli, Brandon Vasfaret and Nathan Hager combined in the 200 Freestyle Relay to clock 1:31.80, which was short of the school record by five-one hundredths of a second.

“We didn’t expect to go that fast,” said Vasfaret, a senior, who swam a 23.32-second leg. “I’ve been going 24s all season. I haven’t been able to break 24. Today, with a little rest, I went 23. So I’m hoping to go a little bit faster at state. We’ll do a lot better at state.”

The boys, like the girls, are seeded first in the two freestyle relays, and third in the 200 Medley Relay.

Vasfaret won the 500 Freestyle in 5:09.98, his second straight title at that distance, and finished half a second behind winner Rawlins Lupoli (2:07.89) in the 200 IM. Vasfaret is seeded seventh in the 500 and eighth in the individual medley.

He said he was happy with his time in the 500, which was nine seconds off his PR, but he plans to do better at state.

“Yesterday I went 5:24,” he said after the final on Saturday. “Today I was hoping for 2:12. I didn’t mean to go that fast at all. There are a lot of fast kids in the 500 at state. I got fifth last year. I’m just hoping to go a bit better.”

The Lupoli twins, who are juniors, battled to the wire in the 100 Breaststroke, Rawlins reaching the wall first by four-hundredths of a second.

“I’ve beaten him before and he’s beaten me before,” Rowland said afterwards. “I didn’t really know.”

“I was a little bit nervous because this season he’s beaten me more times than I’ve beaten him,” Rawlins said. “We were pretty even going in.”

Sweet Home’s top swimmers haven’t really tapered – rested – until this week, so they all expect to see improvements this weekend.

“That’s a good time,” Rowland said of their finish, but “we’re hoping to go faster.”

The two are seeded third and fourth for Friday’s prelims. Rowland, who also won the 100 Butterfly (56.27), is seeded fourth in that event.

Senior Nathan Hager won the 50 (22.53) and the 100 Freestyles (48.94) and is seeded first in the 100, by a little more than half a second ahead of Salem Academy’s Caleb Warde, and second in the 50 Freestyle, two-hundredths of a second behind Madras’ Garrett Webb.

Sweet Home’s other qualifer is senior Sean Wolthuis, who is seeded eighth in the 200 and ninth in the 100 Freestyles after finishing third in the 200 and fourth in the 100.

Other finalists for the Husky boys were Seth Wright (sixth, 200 Freestyle), Bradley Wolthuis (third, 100 Backstroke; fifth, 100 Butterfly); and Dakota Seward (sixth, 500 Freestyle).

For the girls, freshman Moira Curtis made the finals, placing third in the 50 Freestyle, and fifth in the 100 Freestyle.

Peargin said the arrival of the Curtises – Moira, her sister Soriah, a senior, and brother Stewart, a junior – midway through the season, helped the Huskies’ depth immensely. Their mother, the former Peggy West, was a top swimmer for the Huskies in the previous generation.

“Those kids placed in every event they were in,” he said. “They scored points in that department.

“And all of those other kids down in that depth – our lower people rose up. I knew our kids were good, but you win or lose meets with those lower kids.”

The girls will be looking this weekend to repeat their first-ever state title from last year and Peargin said both his boys and girls are top-four teams “if they swim well.”

“It depends what happens when you get up there,” he said. “One guy can make or break you. You can have a guy seeded first and not make the finals.”

Megan Hager said she’s looking forward to it.

“I, of course, hope to win,” she said. “But I know it’s going to be real tough competition and I respect all the girls that I swim against.

Nathan Hager said he is hopeful regarding the boys’ chances at state, where Sweet Home last won a title in 2010.

“I’m thinking it is possible for us to win state, but I’m kind of doubting it. We’ve finished third the last two years, so first would be great, but second would be an improvement.”

Coats noted that the girls are missing graduates Makayla Nelson and Esther Gunselman from last year’s championship squad, but Megan Hager’s arrival gives them a boost as they go into this year’s meet with three seniors who are going to state for the fourth time, and Yon, who has won four state individual titles.

“We lost two, but we got one,” she said. “I’m pretty nervous if we can pull it off, but Megan has outdone herself already. She’s so young. I think with how Megan is swimming this season, it’s possible – as long as everybody does what they need to at state.”

Girls Results

Top 3 and Sweet Home Finishers

200 Medley Relay – (1) Sisters 1:57.22; (2) Sweet Home (Jessica Coats, Elea Hewitt, Mia Davis, Sarah Hewitt) 1:57.72; (3) Philomath 2:11.34; (9) Sweet Home “B” (Kristen Adams, Milah Weld, Torree Hawken, Hikari Kawai) 2:26.74.

200 Freestyle – (1) Lucie Davis (SH) 1:58.67; (2) Sarah Hewitt (SH) 2:04.91; (3) Molly Gallagher 2:09.47; (7) Ella Parker (SH) 2:25.87; (10) Torree Hawken (SH) 2:32.11.

200 IM – (1) Lauren Yon (SH) 2:14.00; (2) Elea Hewitt (SH) 2:29.33; (3) Sarah Kenyon (SA) 2:38.72.

50 Freestyle – (1) Megan Hager (SH) 24.78; (2) Sadie Mak (ST) 26.86; (3) Moira Curtis (SH) 28.25; (9) Soriah Curtis (SH) 29.65.

100 Butterfly – (1) Jessica Coats (SH) 1:01.12; (2) Min Wei (C) 1:03.69; (3) Trinity Pierce (SA) 1:04.74; (4) Mia Davis (SH) 1:05.03/

100 Freestyle – (1) Megan Hager (SH) 53.83; (2) Sadie Mak (Stay) 58.13; (3) Hawley Harrer (Sis) 58.48; (5) Moira Curtis (SH) 1:05.19; (8) Soriah Curtis (SH) 1:06.55.

500 Freestyle – (1) Lucie Davis (SH) 5:11.52; (2) Lydia Bartlett (Sis) 5:12.22; (3) Meredith Mandal (Sis) 5:31.13; (4) Sarah Hewitt (SH) 5:34.96; (5) Mia Davis (SH) 5:43.65; (9) Ella Parker (SH) 6:22.35.

200 Freestyle Relay – (1) Sweet Home (Megan Hager, Jessica Coats, Lauren Yon, Lucie Davis) 1:43.11; (2) Sisters 1:44.48; (3) Salem Academy 1:49.81; (4) Sweet Home “B” (Soriah Curtis, Liz Adams, Ella Parker, Moira Curtis).

100 Backstroke – (1) Jessica Coats (SH) 1:02.41; (2) Molly Gallagher (SA) 1:04.89; (3) Trinity Pierce (SA) 1:07.69.

100 Breaststroke – (1) Lauren Yon (SH) 1:09.66; (2) Brooke Robillard (Sis) 1:11.43; (3) Min Wei (C) 1:12.56; (4) Elea Hewitt (SH) 1:16.79; (10) Milah Weld (SH) 1:26.86; (11) Liz Adams (SH) 1:27.47.

400 Freestyle Relay – (1) Sweet Home (Megan Hager, Sarah Hewitt, Lauren Yon, Lucie Davis) 3:44.16; (2) Sisters 3:49.85; (3) Salem Academy 4:04.61; (4) Sweet Home “B” (Moira Curtis, Ella Parker, Mia Davis, Elea Hewitt).

Boys Results

200 Medley Relay – (1) Sweet Home (Sean Wolthuis, Rowland Lupoli, Rawlins Lupoli, Stewart Curtis) 1:48.01; (2) Salem Academy 1:51.14; (3) Stayton 1:51.14; (7) Sweet Home “B” (Bradley Wolthuis, Craig Hansen, Cameron Taber, Dakota Seward).

200 Freestyle – (1) Caleb Warde (SA) 1:49.27; (2) James Dye (P) 1:49.68; (3) Sean Wolthuis (SH) 1:54.11; (6) Seth Wright (SH) 2:10.91; (7) Craig Hansen (SH) 2:10.30; (8) Cameron Taber (SH) 2:10.81.

200 IM – (1) Rawlins Lupoli (SH) 2:07.89; (2) Brandon Vasfaret (SH) 2:08.55; (3) PaulHegney (SH) 2:13.48; (11) Dakota Seward (SH) 2:48.67.

50 Freestyle – (1) Nathan Hager (SH) 22.53; (2) Wilson McLean (SA) 22.81; (3) Matthew Nettland (SA) 24.40; (7) Stewart Curtis (SH) 25.20 (8) Wesley Parker (SH) 25.70.

100 Butterfly – (1) Rowland Lupoli (SH) 56.27; (2) James Dye (P) 58.42; (3) Elijah Leutwyler (SA) 1:00.38; (5) Bradley Wolthuis (SH) 1:05.74.

100 Freestyle – (1) Nathan Hager (SH) 48.94; (2) Caleb Warde (SA) 49.56; (3) Wilson McLean (SA) 52.15; (4) Sean Wolthuis (SH) 52.20; (9) Stewart Curtis (SH) 55.75; (10) Wesley Parker (SH) 57.33.

500 Freestyle – (1) Brandon Vasfaret (SH) 5:09.98; (2) Davis McHugh (SA) 5:18.34; (3) Chris Linton (Stay) 5:28.04; (6) Dakota Seward (SH) 6:06.99; (7) Cameron Taber (SH) 5:55.31; (8) Seth Wright (SH) 6:06.00.

SWEET HOME boys and girls show off their district championship trophies after their big day Saturday.

200 Freestyle Relay – (1) Sweet Home (Rowland Lupoli, Rawlins Lupoli, Brandon Vasfaret, Nathan Hager) 1:31.80; (2) Salem Academy 1:35.08; (3) Philomath 1:41.50; (5) Sweet Home “B” (Wesley Parker, Craig Hansen, Dakota Seward, Sethh Wright) 1:47.60.

100 Backstroke – (1) Davis McHugh (SA) 1:01.74; (2) Elijah Leutwyler (SA) 1:04.05; (3) Bradley Wolthuis (SH) 1:07.72.

100 Breaststroke – (1) Rawlins Lupoli (SH) 1:03.21; (2) Rowland Lupoli (SH) 1:03.25; (3) Eric Seitz (Stay) 1:07.20; (9) Craig Hansen (SH) 1:16.19.

400 Freestyle Relay – (1) Sweet Home (Steward Curtis, Sean Wolthuis, Brandon Vasfaret, Nathan Hager) 3:26.48; (2) Salem Academy 3:29.80; (3) Stayton 3:53.56.


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