Picayune Boys win State Championship (More
Hall leads Picayune
to state swim title
By Curtis Rockwell
Picayune Item Sports Editor
High School captured its first ever swimming state championship Saturday,
as the Maroon Tide boys team swam its way to a convincing win in the overall
state meet that featured 43 teams.
Picayune tallied 268 points, to edge out Madison Central (248) and defending
state champion Tupelo (233) for the title at the Sportsplex Natatorium
It was a very
exciting day, and a big day for the team and the school, Picayune coach
Ray Lossett said. We thought we'd have a good shot at winning if we swam
well, and everything went off like clockwork.
Doug Hall paced Picayune to the win, as he captured first place in the
100-yard butterfly event with a time of 54 seconds flat.
It was the first ever individual state championship for a Picayune High
swimmer. He also swam a leg on the winning relay team in the 400-yard
Picayune's 200 yard freestyle relay team also won the state title. Hall
also finished third in the 200 yard Individual Medley. But Hall
was just one part of an impressive overall team effort, as the Maroon
Tide swimmers shattered team records in 10 of 12 events.
Tupelo, which had 60 entrants entered in the 12 events, took an early
lead over Picayune after four events, but the local swimmers came back
through the next four events to take the lead and then held off both the
Golden Wave and MCHS for the title.
Picayune had just 30 entrants entered in the 12 events.
It was a case of quality beating quantity, Losset added, "The difference
in numbers made us basically have to finish in the top eight in every
event, and that's what we did."
The Picayune winning relay teams consisted of Andrew Lohnes, Ben Daly,
Blake Rutherford, and Neil Jarrett in the 200 and Daly, Rutherford, Jarrett
and Hall in the 400.
Hall, in fact, led a clean Pearl River County sweep of the top three spots
in the 100-yard butterfly as Pearl River Central Zach Lossett and Gavin
Lossett finished in second and third place, respectively, in the event.
Top five finishers for Picayune were Blake Rutherford, fifth in the 500
yard freestyle,and Ben Daly, fifth in the 50 yard freestyle.
In the girls meet, Picayune finished 22nd. Tupelo won it's sixth straight
Other Maroon Tide swimmers competing Saturday in the state championship
were Jake Martinez Nick Riso, Walter Rusby, Aaron Spiers, T.J. House,
Clint Davis, Jared Bates, Brice Warden and Jordan Kiser.