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Warrior swimmers take second in CIF, win 200-yard freestyle relay - Knitter, Pril set school records

Fallbrook High School’s boys swim team placed second among Division I schools at the CIF meet May 22 at Coronado High School.

The Warriors won the 200-yard freestyle relay for the second consecutive year, and school records were set by Fallbrook High School seniors Chris Knitter and Jacob Pril.

The Warriors fell 14 points short of the total of Carlsbad, which won the CIF Division I championship for the eighth consecutive season. Carlsbad won its 2003 championship by 16 1/2 points over second-place La Costa Canyon; none of Carlsbad’s next six championships were by fewer than 70 points over the second-place finisher. “It was fun to actually be in a meet that was competitive,” said Fallbrook coach Bill Richardson.

Carlsbad won the meet with 172 points, Fallbrook had 158 points, Torrey Pines finished third with 150 points, La Costa Canyon accumulated 144 points for fourth place, and Westview was fifth after earning 131 points.

The Warriors have never won the CIF boys swim championship, so second place shares Fallbrook’s best finish. “To equal that is definitely satisfying,” Richardson said.

Fallbrook was the Division I runner-up in 2006, when the Warriors finished 160 points behind Carlsbad. While the 2010 runner-up finish was Fallbrook’s fourth, it was the closest the Warriors have come to winning the CIF title while earning runner-up status. The Warriors trailed 2001 Division I champion Valhalla by 22 points. The CIF only had one division in swimming in 1977, when Patrick Henry had a 37-point edge over Fallbrook to win the CIF championship.

Last year Fallbrook’s boys tied for fourth at the CIF meet, equalling the 115 points of La Costa Canyon but placing behind Carlsbad’s 247 points, Poway’s second-place 172 points, and Westview’s 158 points. The Warriors finished fifth at the 2008 CIF meet, although Westview was in Division II in 2008 so in each of the past two years the Warriors have gained two positions over Division I opponents.

Fallbrook was in sixth place in the standings early in the 2010 meet but moved up to third by the successful 200-yard freestyle relay. “It was just fun to watch as we kind of inched forward,” Richardson said.

The CIF meet begins with the preliminaries, which were held May 19 at Coronado High School. The swimmers and relay teams with the top six times in each event in the preliminaries advance to the championship race in the finals while the next six times qualify for the consolation finals. Points are given for positions in the championship race and the consolation finals.

Points are also given for positions in the diving meet, which this year was held May 21 at Mesa College.

Josh Urnezis of Rancho Bernardo won the Division I diving championship with 317.75 points on six dives. Kevin Breesen of Granite Hills, who last year scored 252.45 points to win the CIF championship, was second with 289.35 points. Knitter placed third with 250.05 points while Fallbrook senior Luke Jones was fourth with 245.60 points.

“It’s a real luxury to have those two guys able to score that many points,” Richardson said. “Because of the diving, that put us into range of going into the top three.”

Knitter and Jones both surpassed Knitter’s six-dive school record of 236 points set earlier this year. Prior to Knitter’s performance earlier in the year, the school’s six-dive record was 232.05 points set by Brent Craig in 2001.

Knitter also won the Avocado League meet, which utilized an 11-dive format, and set a school 11-dive record with 388.60 points at the league meet.

During the preliminaries Pril swam the 200-yard freestyle race in 1:42.70, which gave the Concordia-bound senior the school record. Fallbrook’s previous fastest time in that event was a swim of 1:42.80 accomplished by David Brown in 2001. Pril advanced to the championship race in that event, where his time of 1:45.65 placed him sixth.

Pril also competed in the 100-yard breaststroke and came within 1/100 of a second of breaking the longest-standing school record for boys swim. Pril followed his 1:00.87 in the preliminaries with a time of 1:00.81 in the finals, placing him fifth in the CIF competition and narrowly missing the school record of 1:00.80 set by Luke Salerno in 1985.

Pril was joined in the 200-yard freestyle event by freshman Sam McDaniels, who qualified for the consolation finals and placed tenth with a time of 1:47.89, and by junior Garrett McGurk, who finished 17th after taking 1:51.87 during the preliminaries. The 100-yard breaststroke saw junior Sam Torres finish 19th after a time of 1:06.38 in the preliminaries.

The 200-yard freestyle relay team of senior Geoff Jameson, senior Kevin Reichel, sophomore Garrett McKeown, and Pril posted a time of 1:28.16 in the finals to win the championship race. Last year Jameson, Reichel, 2009 senior Kai Bowman, and Pril won the race in 1:27.82. “It was nice to defend our title,” Richardson said. “We had high hopes to win that race.”

The win in the 200-yard freestyle relay was the fourth at the CIF meet for a Fallbrook relay team. In 1977, when Ken Brower was Fallbrook’s coach, the Warriors won the 200-yard medley relay. In 2001 Fallbrook won the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:27.86, which stood as the school record for that event until the 2009 CIF meet.

Fallbrook’s 200-yard freestyle relay team also had the fastest time in the preliminaries at 1:28.36.

“The rest of our points came from depth,” Richardson said. “It just shows you how balanced of a team we had as well as Carlsbad.”

Carlsbad won the 200-yard medley relay championship race, which was the Lancers’ only win in an event. “They had more guys swimming than we did,” Richardson said.

The Warriors swam in the consolation finals of the 200-yard medley relay race. McKeown, McDaniels, senior Cameron Mannino, and sophomore Mike Maryn had a time of 1:44.31 to place fourth in the consolation race, which equates to a tenth-place finish.

Jameson had two individual third-place finishes in the finals. He took 21.48 seconds in the 50-yard freestyle and 47.35 seconds to complete the 100-yard freestyle.

Reichel took sixth in the 200-yard individual medley with a time of 2:00.69. During the preliminaries junior Alec Carpenter swam that event in 2:05.07 to take 13th place and senior Parker Smith placed 17th with a time of 2:07.46.

Mannino was sixth in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 56.30 seconds in the finals. Mannino had taken 54.99 seconds during his preliminary race in that event. McKeown placed 12th in the butterfly with a time of 56.85 seconds in the consolation finals; McKeown’s preliminary race saw him swim the 100 yards in 55.89 seconds.

McDaniels placed eighth in the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 4:50.87. McGurk’s time of 4:58.03 in the preliminaries placed him 13th while Maryn had a 22nd-place time of 5:08.18 in the preliminaries.

Reichel took eighth place in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 56.67 seconds. McKeown swam his preliminary race in 59.17 seconds to place 17th while Smith was 19th at 59.63 seconds.

Fallbrook was third in points entering the final race of the meet, the 400-yard freestyle relay. If Fallbrook won that race and Carlsbad finished fourth, the two teams would have tied for first, and a Fallbrook win combined with a Carlsbad fifth-place or sixth-place finish would have given the Warriors the championship outright. “They pretty much needed to disqualify in order for us to win it. That was a little too much to hope for,” Richardson said.

La Costa Canyon won the 400-yard freestyle relay and Carlsbad finished second. Rancho Buena Vista was third while the Fallbrook team of Jameson, McDaniels, Reichel, and Pril swam the race in 3:13.66 for a fourth-place finish.

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