Loyola withstands challenge from Mt. St. Joe in 103-83 win


High School

January 15, 2003|By Sam Atkinson | Sam Atkinson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

The Loyola swim team weathered another close Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association meet yesterday against upstart Mount St. Joseph at CCBC Catonsville. The Dons pulled away from the Gaels after the 200-yard free relay and coasted through the final three events to a 103-83 victory.

"On paper, it is a 20-point win, but it was a really close meet," said Loyola coach Keith Schertle.

The Dons (5-2 overall, 3-0 MIAA) the predominant swimming team in the Baltimore area for a decade, having won nine straight league championships, is more vulnerable this season as a strong sophomore class is looked upon to carry on the tradition.

"We knew that they were down [this year], but I also knew exactly what they had," said Mount St. Joseph coach Rob Kinnear. "We basically set up against their team the best we could. I think we surprised them coming out the way we did. This was probably the best meet that I have ever coached."

The Gaels (3-2) shot out of the blocks as they won the first three events to take a 24-22 lead. Mount St. Joseph out-touched Loyola in the 200 medley relay, the first event, and won with a time of 1 minute, 41.95 seconds.

Gaels senior Evan Swann won the 200 freestyle (1:49.50) and the 500 freestyle (4:56.70) while sophomore Eric Cullen took first in the 200 individual medley (2:00.47) and set a school record in the 100 breaststroke (1:01.36). In all, the Gaels won seven of the 12 events.

"The top of the meet is where a lot of our good events are. We have to do well or we will be behind at the end," said Kinnear. "Diving was key in this meet and our medley relay was excellent; it couldn't have been better."

Juniors Tim Ward and Mike Kerins finished first and second in the one-meter diving event to give the Gaels their final lead of the day, 40.5-37.5.

"We figured we would be close or a little behind after diving, then the second half of the meet was when we would take off," Schertle said.

Sophomore Nick Taylor won the 50 free (0:22.56) and the 100 free (0:49.65) for the Dons and was a part of the 200 free relay team (1:32.23). Loyola took first and second place in the 200 free relay to push its lead to 79-61 with only three events left.

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