The second MOAC championship meet was held on Jan. 30 at the Marion YMCA. In addition to Mount Gilead, the other competing teams were Galion, Marion Pleasant, Marion Harding, River Valley, Jonathan Alder, Fairbanks and Marion Elgin.
“In years past, we participated in what was known as the TriCounty Championship, but last year the MOAC was reorganized and enough schools had swim teams for us to hold a championship meet,” explained MG coach Dina Snow. “This also meant for the first time, swimmers who placed within the top three could receive MOAC honors like athletes in other sports.”
Galion won the championship this year, but MG came in second by just 12 points, with the final score being 376-364. Pleasant was third with 298 points.
“It was a close meet. As the events progressed, Mount Gilead was even ahead of Galion until at least half way. It was fun to keep them on their toes. They have some very fast swimmers, but our swimmers were willing to get in there and fill up even the harder events — that depth brought us the second place accomplishment,” said Snow. “I had 3 first year swimmers volunteer to swim the 500 free just to score points: Gavin Robinson, John McGill and Trenton Ball!”
Pleasant won the girls meet, but MG’s two female swimmers both had a great meet — earning some seasonal personal bests.
Scoring in the top three and earning MOAC honors were the boys 200 medley relay team of Logan Conrad, Evan Zmuda, Casey Conrad and Kyle Landes in third place; Erin Zmuda, first in the 50 free and second in the 100 free; Landes, third in the 100 free; Evan Zmuda, second in the 100 breast; and the boys 200 free relay team of Conrad, Landes, Conrad and Zmuda.
Personal bests were earned by Casey Conrad in the 200 free, Andrew McFarland in the 100 back, Marion McGill in the 500 free and Dylan Knight in the 100 breast.
Scoring additional important points for the Indians were Casey Conrad, Jay Stratton, and Noah Arrington in the 200 free; Evan Zmuda, Colton Long and Gavin Robinson in the 200 IM; Marion McGill, Kyle Landes, Logan Conrad and Kurtis Brown in the 50 free; Casey Conrad, Aaron Evans and Spencer Faux in the 100 fly; Kurtis Brown and Dylan Knight in the 100 free; Marion McGill, Gavin Robinson, John McGill and Trenton Ball in the 500 free; Jay Stratton , Tyler Jones and Andrew McFarland in the 100 back; Logan Conrad and Dylan Knight in the 100 breast; and the 400 free relay team of Noah Arrington, Jay Stratton, Colton Long and Aaron Evans.
The team will close the season with the Central District Sectional meet at the Columbus Academy on Feb. 13. Swimmers that advance from there will compete at the District meet at OSU on Feb. 19.