The Hilliard Marlins built a huge lead halfway through the Suburban Swim Club League meet July 12 at Annehurst Pool in Westerville and made it stand despite a furious charge from Swim and Racquet Club.

The Hilliard Marlins built a huge lead halfway through the Suburban Swim Club League meet July 12 at Annehurst Pool in Westerville and made it stand despite a furious charge from Swim and Racquet Club.

Such staying power is what Marlins coach Jeff Williams long has envisioned for his team, as Hilliard scored 3,203 points to hold off runner-up Swim and Racquet (3,070) to win its second consecutive league championship.

Hilliard led 2,150-1,444 after swimmers ages 11 and older competed in the morning session, and Swim and Racquet closed much of the gap by winning 18 of 25 events in the 10-and-younger afternoon session.

"It is exciting to see us build something that wasn't just for one year," Williams said. "We are trying to shoot for longevity and show that we have a lot of talented swimmers and divers in Hilliard. We love to showcase that."

Annehurst was third (1,732), followed by Olentangy (1,490) and Grandview (1,034).

Mason Peck won the boys 11-12 50-meter backstroke (34.17 seconds), 50 freestyle (29.12) and 100 individual medley (1:10.99), Kaitlyn Sims won the girls 13-14 50 back (34.99) and 100 IM (1:13.75) and Brady Vann captured the boys 13-14 50 breaststroke (34.61) and 100 IM (1:06.82).

Sixteen of Hilliard's 21 wins came in the morning session.

"I am so proud of our older division," Williams said. "I remember when we didn't have a 15- to 18-year-old that swam. But that's what I mean about staying with the program. Some of these families have stayed 10-plus years, and that is how you can win a championship."

The Marlins' other individual wins came from Macie Arnett in the girls 8-and-younger 25 back (24.84), Brogan Gehring in the girls 13-14 50 breast (37.12), Sammy Knight in the girls 8-and-younger 25 free (18.74), Eli Lombardo in the boys 8-and-younger 25 back (23.16), Eeshaa Mehta in the girls 13-14 50 free (29.76) and Molly Shanahan in the girls 11-12 50 breast (39.14).

Lily Schneider tied Swim and Racquet's Abby Oliphant for the girls 8-and-younger 25 butterfly title (21.52).

Hilliard won seven relays -- the girls 8-and-younger 100 medley (1:33.43), boys 11-12 200 medley (2:15.71), girls 11-12 200 free (2:13.49), girls 11-12 200 medley (2:27.04), boys 13-14 200 free (2:04.65), girls 13-14 200 medley (2:18.86) and boys 15-18 200 medley (2:03.79).

"We're strong in every area. We are balanced," Marlins swimmer Morgan Morcher said. "(Williams) has talked to us over and over again about working as hard as we did last year. Work even harder because we (were defending champions)."

Teammate Ben Bartels said defending last year's championship, establishing a legacy and supporting teammates were preached all season.

"(Williams) told us just to race. A lot. Race hard and race fast," Bartels said. "Hilliard kids are loud, and Hilliard kids are obnoxious. We will always support our teammates. It helps a lot."

Dodge, Sheehan pace Sea Dogs

Erin Sheehan racked up three of Swim and Racquet's 36 wins, capturing the girls 15-18 50 fly (28.98), 50 breast (35.55) and 100 IM (1:09.55) titles. The Notre Dame recruit and recent Upper Arlington High School graduate also helped the 200 medley relay to victory (2:10.47).

"I wasn't worried about time. I already have a lot of records here so I wanted to have fun," Sheehan said. "Some girls that go off to college might not train beforehand and they don't do as well in college. It is really important to me that I continue on with my success."

Jackson Dodge also won three events -- the boys 8-and-younger 25 breast (22.47), 25 fly (22.63) and 25 free (17.6). Two-time winners were Reid Caswell (boys 9-10 25 fly in 16.12 and 50 free in 32.96), Ethan Fischer (boys 15-18 50 back in 29.37 and 50 breast in 32.4), McCall Freiburger (girls 9-10 25 back in 25.26 and 25 breast in 21.53), Grant Kennedy (boys 11-12 50 breast in 41.18 and 50 fly in 33.69), Lizzie Oliphant (girls 9-10 25 fly in 14.92 and 50 free in 31.32) and Caroline Porterfield (girls 11-12 50 free in 29.59 and 100 IM in 1:14.79).

Porterfield's 100 IM time shattered the team record of 1:17 previously held by Kendra Sheehan.

"I was just shooting for a better time," Porterfield said. "I warmed up this morning and I was feeling very good. I knew it'd be a good race."

Other individual winners for the Sea Dogs were Anna Fischer in the girls 15-18 50 free (29.26), Jack Geletka in the boys 9-10 25 back (18.91), Jack Kersetter in the boys 13-14 50 back (34.15), Reed Ray in the boys 13-14 50 free (28.59), Kendra Sheehan in the girls 15-18 50 back (32.82) and Caroline Ubert in the girls 11-12 50 fly (33.09).

Swim and Racquet also won the boys 8-and-younger 100 medley (1:36.65), boys 8-and-younger 100 free (1:36.9), girls 8-and-younger 100 free (1:35.85), boys 9-10 200 free (2:38.61), girls 9-10 200 free (2:44.59), boys 9-10 100 medley (1:12.85), girls 9-10 100 medley (1:15.97), boys 11-12 200 free (2:15.44), girls 13-14 200 free (2:18.69), girls 15-18 200 free (2:01.11) and girls 15-18 200 medley (2:10.47) relays.

Swim and Racquet also won the SSCL diving title in its home pool July 13, scoring 479 points to finish ahead of Hilliard (389), Olentangy (82) and Grandview (23).

Gutman's three wins power Piranhas

A second-place performance to start the day powered Annehurst's Michael Gutman to three victories.

Gutman won the boys 15-18 50 fly (27.59), 50 free (25.19) and 100 IM (1:03.24), and was on the runner-up 200 medley relay (2:03.88).

"The relay gave me the momentum boost I needed," Gutman said. "I hadn't been doing well in the 50 free all summer, so this was a good time to get a good time in that. The butterfly, that's kind of my event. It worked out well. It's always been my strength. I do IM but I train the butterfly day in and day out in practice. I like the upper-body strength. If you figure out how to get your hips on the water and glide, you'll be more efficient."

Other winners for Annehurst were Ema Rennie in the girls 13-14 50 fly (32.14), J.J. Rennie in the boys 9-10 25 breast (19.26) and Roan Stacey in the girls 8-and-younger 25 breast (25.42).

Wisler, relay pace Tornadoes

Olentangy got two wins, from Alex Wisler in the boys 13-14 50 fly (29.77) and the boys 15-18 free relay (2:05.87) of Luke Bendick, Baxter Whitehead, Taylor Whitehead and Riley Yant.

The Tornadoes' girls top finish came from Meggie Gehring, who was fourth in the 11-12 50 free (33.13).

Relay win leads Gators

Grandview's only win came from its boys 13-14 200 medley relay (2:12.85) with Carson Cross, Joey DeCola, Charlie Ferguson and Leo Graham.

Phoebe Ferguson provided the Gators' best individual performance with a runner-up finish in the girls 11-12 100 IM (1:16.46).

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