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Green Valley nips Coronado for title

Its early lead dwindled, but Green Valley’s boys swimming team withstood a strong challenge from Coronado to win the Sunrise Regional Championship at UNLV on Saturday.

Without winning a swimming event, the Gators tallied 398 points and edged runner-up Coronado by nine. Boulder City finished third with 351.

On the girls side, Coronado won its fourth straight regional crown.

The Green Valley boys dominated the diving competition Wednesday to take a 63-12 lead over Coronado into Saturday’s swimming events. The Gators’ Ryan Chatwin took first with 444.25 points, Blake Bitton second, Tyler Baldwin fifth and Wayne Hope sixth.

“They’ve got a great diving team,” Coronado boys coach Brook Brayman said of the Gators. “Blake and Ryan are awesome. They beat us by 50 points in diving. But my boys swam great.”

The Cougars immediately started trimming Green Valley’s lead when their 200-yard medley relay team finished third, one place in front of the Gators.

Coronado’s Martin Vanis won the 200 freestyle — the second event Saturday — and later captured the 100 freestyle. Teammate Jeff Byrd placed first in the 100 butterfly and second in the 100 backstroke.

The Cougars won the meet’s final event, the 400 freestyle relay, but the Gators held on to win the title by finishing second in the event.

“(The close margin) was what I expected,” Green Valley coach Bob Swift said. “A lot of kids really made some dramatic time drops and improvement this year. They really worked hard and lived up to their potential.”

The Gators had at least a top-five finisher in each of the 10 swimming events.

Boulder City was led by freshman Zane Grothe, who won the 200 and 500 freestyles.

The Coronado girls compiled 569 points to blow away second-place Silverado (345).

The Cougars got off to a good start with Jordyn Lauten’s diving victory Wednesday. She posted a score of 381.90 points.

Coronado continued that trend by winning Saturday’s first two events: the 200 medley relay, in a meet-record time of 1 minute, 52.09 seconds, and the 200 freestyle, won by Katie Black.

The Cougars also finished strong, with Rachell McClain (100 backstroke), Tatum Gormley (100 breaststroke) and the 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams posting victories in the final four events.

“I have quite a few swimmers that are very skilled,” Coronado girls coach Brenda Tomtan-Brayman said. “Of course you want to win, but as many swimmers that we can put into an event that are high level, that is my goal. The faster the swimmers are in each event, then I definitely have a better outcome.”

Silverado’s Addie Oswald won the 200 individual medley and 500 freestyle, and Boulder City’s Alexis Grothe won the 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly.

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