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Special District Swimming Championships

Marhsfield's Zach Randle competes Friday in the 500-yard freestyle event during the Special District 4 Swimming championships at the North Bend Community Pool.

NORTH BEND — Marshfield senior AJ Kliewer had a simple reaction to his efforts on the first day of the Class 4A-3A-2A-1A District 4 swim meet at North Bend Municipal Pool on Friday.

“I am crazy excited,” Kliewer said.

It was a common reaction on a day when times came down for many of the swimmers from the 12 schools in the special district.

“We’ve had so many PRs today,” Marshfield’s Anna Hutchins said. “That’s insane. And it’s not even finals.”

Friday was an important day in the meet, because it determined which swimmers are in the top heats for Saturday’s finals, when all the scoring is compiled.

Saturday also will be when spots at the upcoming state meet will be decided. The winners of each race advance to state, as well as any swimmers with times among the top eight for non-winners at the four meets around the state this weekend.

Marshfield positioned itself to sweep the team titles with a strong day of qualifying, including placing numerous swimmers in the championship final, which scores the most points, in several different events.

“I’m really excited,” Kliewer said. “We have so many people placed up high — all clustered up high.”

Kliewer posted the top time Friday in the 200-yard individual medley, a mark of 2 minutes, 5.12 seconds that took a half second off his lifetime best, even though the team hasn’t started tapering, which it will do before the state meet.

He also is seeded second in the breaststroke for today’s finals.

Other Marshfield swimmers earning top seeds Friday included Connor Fromm in the 200 freestyle and 100 breaststroke, Zachary Randle in the 500 freestyle (he also was second to Fromm in the 200 freestyle) and Hutchins in both the 200 and 500 freestyle for girls.

But where Marshfield has an advantage is its depth.

The Pirates had four of the top six times in the butterfly for the boys and three of the top six in the 200 freestyle.

Marshfield’s girls had four of the top five times in both the 200 and 500 freestyle. Kady Cooley was second to Hutchins in both races.

The Pirates also expect to score well in all the relays, which count double.

Marshfield’s boys earned the top seed time in all three relays and the girls had the top time in both freestyle relays — St. Mary’s was fastest in the medley relay.

Where the Pirates aren’t seeded first, the top seeds are spread out among multiple schools.

For the boys, Alec Shepherd of Phoenix (50 and 100 freestyle) joined Fromm as a top seed in two events. Asa Frisbee of St. Mary’s had the top time in the backstroke and Christian Scaglione of Cascade Christian nudged out Kliewer for the top time in the breaststroke.

For the girls, Klamath Union’s Paige Orlando (50 and 100 freestyle) and Ahnyka Lahmann of St. Mary’s (individual medley and butterfly) joined Hutchins as top seed in two events. Ivy Frisbee of St. Mary’s is the top seed in the backstroke and Macy Hullman of Henley in the breaststroke.

The meet starts back up Saturday at 11:20 a.m. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for students.

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Sports Editor John Gunther can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 241, or by email at john.gunther@theworldlink.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jguntherworld.

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Sports Editor