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Fallbrook girls gain edge in girls swim league championship quest

Fallbrook High School and Ramona High School are the only two Valley League swim teams with on-campus pools, and the April 19 meet at Ramona may have given Fallbrook a league championship.

Regular-season standings account for half of the formula which determines the final league positions and the other half is based on positions at the league championship meet.

Fallbrook's 103-83 victory April 19 gave the Warriors a final Valley League record of 7-0 in dual meets while Ramona finished with a 6-1 mark. The league meet which will take place April 25‑27 in Fallbrook will likely determine whether Fallbrook shares the league championship or wins the league title outright.

"It's the first step, but we still have work to do," said Fallbrook coach Sean Redmond.

The meet consisted of eight individual swimming events, three relay swim races, and diving. "Some didn't go quite like I expected, but it all came together," Redmond said.

In 2022, Fallbrook was undefeated in league dual meets and placed first at the league meet while Ramona was 3-2 in Valley League meets for third place that year and tied for second at the league meet. The 2023 Ramona girls lost only to Fallbrook in league dual meets and obtained a share of the league championship after finishing 44 points ahead of the Warriors at the league meet.

"We'll see how that goes this year," Redmond said.

Individual league champions are determined solely on performances at the league meet. In 2022, current Fallbrook junior Maile McMahon won the Valley League girls diving championship. Last year, current Ramona junior Piper Williams was the league champion.

The scores of each judge for a dive are added and then multiplied by the degree of difficulty to provide the total score for that dive. Williams (in conjunction with Ramona diving coach Deena Vizcarra) opted to practice more difficult dives April 19 and placed fifth. McMahon scored 191.60 points on six dives to win that event while Fallbrook sophomore Emylee Turner placed second with 190.75 points.

A time of 2:03.11 gave Ramona first-place points in the 200-yard medley relay with the Fallbrook quartet of junior Liesel Young, senior Ava Dowden, senior Kela Kendall, and sophomore Claire Lucia finishing second at 2:03.44. Fallbrook senior Ava Papoulias won the first individual event, taking 2:04.90 to win the 200-yard freestyle, with Ramona freshman Avery Watkins having the second-place time of 2:05.68.

Dowden then won the 200-yard individual medley in 2:23.60 to beat Ramona freshman Alessandra Alberts by four seconds. Ramona's Dusseault sisters then took first and second in the 50-yard freestyle, creating a tie score for the two teams.

Fallbrook finished first and third in the 100-yard butterfly, which Kendall won in 1:08.75, with Ramona obtaining position points for second, fourth, and fifth. Ramona was first, second, and fifth in the 100-yard freestyle.

"Going into the 500 it was a close meet," Redmond said.

Papoulias won the 500-yard freestyle, completing her 20 laps in 5:44.25. Ramona sophomore Avonlea Hammonds was second at 5:46.18. Fallbrook was given points for third and fourth.

Ramona won the 200-yard freestyle relay in 1:48.23. Kendall, freshman Ava Bird, freshman Ella Martinez, and Papoulias had a time of 1:49.67. Ramona also obtained third-place points for that race.

"The backstroke and breaststroke were critical for us," Redmond said.

Fallbrook finished first, third, and fifth in the 100-yard backstroke. Young had a winning time of 1:11.26. Ramona freshman Abby Hollopeter became the second finisher 1:15.29 after the race began.

Dowden needed 1:12.01 to win the 100-yard breaststroke. Ramona's Alberts was second at 1:18.39. Lucia and sophomore Sofia Max finished third and fourth.

Fallbrook closed the meet by taking first and third in the 400-yard freestyle relay. Papoulias, Martinez, Bird, and Dowden won in 3:58.73. Hammonds, senior Kayla Gompper, Watkins, and junior Katie Dusseault had the second-place time of 4:07.49.

"It was a close meet," Redmond said.

Author Bio

Joe Naiman, Writer

Joe Naiman has been writing for the Village News since 2001

 

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