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Prep swimming: Tooele's Johnson breaks through to win title
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Provo • There Tooele senior swimmer Brandon Johnson stood, on the highest platform of the podium, after all the hours of work and all the years spent hoping and wishing.

He bent over, and the first-place medal was lifted onto his neck. He pointed into the stands at his family. There were tears in his eyes.

"I can't even describe the feeling. I am so happy right now," Johnson said. "To be able to take a state title back to Tooele — we've had some droughts for medals — feels really good to be able to bring it back to home."

Johnson had been on this podium six times before but never as a champion. On Saturday, though, on the final day of the Class 3A state meet, he swam the boys' 100-yard butterfly at 53.80 seconds, almost a half-second faster than anyone else.

It was a victory for Johnson, yes. But it was also a victory for his coaches and teammates, his family and friends, who for so long had driven Johnson to his dream.

"I've been training for four years now, and I've been training just to get first place," Johnson said. "It's a great moment to be able to tell them I finally did it."

As Johnson stepped off the podium, he embraced Stansbury's Jonathan Buckendorf, who had earned a spot on the podium with a sixth-place finish. Emotion overwhelmed them, and Johnson's face reddened. He was ending his Tooele career the way he had envisioned for so long, with a state title in his hand and his best friend by his side.

"Our goal when we came here was that he was going to be up on the podium with me," Johnson said. "When I heard he got up there, I was so happy. He's my best friend. He's like a brother to me."

One race before Johnson's, Desert Hills junior Tessa Trimble also achieved something that had eluded her in the past. Trimble won the girls' 100 butterfly with a time of 1:00.67, reclaiming the state title she won two years ago as a freshman but lost last year when she finished fourth.

It was one of the tightest races of the meet, and less than one second separated Trimble from fourth. But when she looked up and found her lane on the scoreboard, the title was once again hers.

"It feels good to be back at the top again," Johnson said. "It was just training and my mindset going in." —

Highlights

O Tooele senior Brandon Johnson takes first in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 53.80 seconds, beating the rest of the field by almost half a second.

• Desert Hills junior Tessa Trimble reclaims the title for the girls' 100 butterfly, which she won two years ago. Overlines —

Desert Hills junior Amelia Draney, who on Day 1 of the Class 3A meet had won the girls' 200-yard freestyle by more than nine seconds, took the 500-yard freestyle by 34.34 seconds with a time of 4:59.38.

Wasatch wins three of Day 2's relay events — the girls' and boys' 200-yard freestyle relays and the boys' 400 freestyle — to win both the girls' and boys' overall Class 3A state title.

Results:

Girls' 100-yard butterfly

1. Tessa Trimble, Desert Hills, 1:00.67; 2. Kaley Banyai, Judge Memorial, 1:01.02; 3. Natalie McDonald, Park City, 1:01.27; 4. Allison Witte, Judge Memorial, 1:01.39; 5. Isabel Romano, Judge Memorial, 1:04.10; 6. Rachel Finley, Wasatch, 1:04.36.

Boys' 100 butterfly

1. Brandon Johnson, Tooele, 53.80; 2. Garrett Jensen, Park City, 54.28; 3. Brady Winward, Wasatch, 54.72; 4. Alec Topkis, Park City, 55.81; 5. Zack Paddock, Pine View, 56.14; 6. Jonathan Buckendorf, Stansbury, 57.13.

Girls' 100 freestyle

1. McKenzie Barber, Snow Canyon, 54.06; 2. Phebe James, Wasatch, 55.63; 3. Zoe Smith, Desert Hills, 56.62; 4. Megan Draney, Desert Hills, 56.83; 5. Rachel Low, Wasatch, 57.36; 6. Emileeann Moran, Judge Memorial, 57.60.

Boys' 100 freestyle

1. Bryce Mounteer, Wasatch, 49.57; 2. Makai Smith, Desert Hills, 49.75; 3. Phillip Hojnacki, Juan Diego, 49.95; 4. Sam England, Wasatch, 50.19; 5. Mitchell Brown, Cedar City, 50.38; 6. Hunter Tolbert, Wasatch, 50.50.

Girls' 500 freestyle

1. Amelia Draney, Desert Hills, 4:59.38; 2. Kaylee LaBaron, Hurricane, 5:33.72; 3. Bailey Burke, Park City, 5:38.02; 4. Dani Kfoury, Intermountain Christian, 5:38.70; 5. Megan Flake, Park City, 5:39.45; 6. Lonnie Meineche, Carbon, 5:41.23.

Boys' 500 freestyle

1. Mitchell Hutchings, Pine View, 4:51.43; 2. Colton Christensen, Spanish Fork, 4:54.55; 3. Jensen Howard, Park City, 4:57.52; 4. Michael Pantelakis, 5:00.58; 5. Jacob Brook, Summit Academy, 5:07.70; 6. Garrett Hillman, Stansbury, 5:11.13.

Girls' 200 freestyle relay

1. Wasatch, 1:41.39; 2. Desert Hills, 1:42.65; 3. Judge Memorial, 1:45.23; 4. Juan Diego, 1:45.68; 5. Snow Canyon, 1:45.77; 6. Park City, 1:45.86.

Boys' 200 freestyle relay

1. Wasatch, 1:29.97; 2. Juan Diego, 1:33.03; 3. Tooele, 1:34;14; 4. Pine View, 1:34.18; 5. Desert Hills, 1:35.07; 6. Dixie, 1:36.16.

Girls' 100 backstroke

1. Natalie McDonald, Park City, 1:00.21; 2. Jaime Slack, Cedar City, 1:02.52; 3. Tiffany Farris, Snow Canyon, 1:03.95; 4. Sydney Zwick, Snow Canyon, 1:04.59; 5. Kayla Greer, Dixie, 1:04.67; 6. Natalie Buelte, Uintah, 1:04.84.

Boys' 100 backstroke

1. David Finley, Wasatch, 54.92; 2. Spencer Bleazard, Desert Hills, 55.83; 3. Garrett Jansen, Park City, 55.96; 4. Ryan Brown, Stansbury, 57.22; 5. Alex Knight, Cedar City, 57.58; 6. Connor Newman, Snow Canyon, 57.66.

Girls' 100 backstroke

1. Anna Dahl, Wasatch, 1:06.54; 2. Aspen Johnson, Waterford, 1:08.43; 3. Marcela Vasquez, Judge Memorial, 1:09.92; 4. Laryssa Guymon, Emery, 1:12.55; 5. Tajia Perkins, Tooele, 1:13.55; 6. Jessica Guymon, Emery, 1:14.02.

Boys' 100 backstroke

1. Zach Carfi, Park City, 1:00.74; 2. Hunter Hallows, Wasatch, 1:02.49; 3. Ty Fejerany, Ben Lomond, 1:04.94; 4. Chet Oxborrow, Spanish Fork, 1:05.24; 5. Dominic Oliver, Judge Memorial, 1:06.50; 6. Vincent Hess, Park City, 1:07.36.

Girls' 400 freestyle relay

1. Desert Hills, 3:48.22; 2. Park City, 3:48.74; 3. Wasatch, 3:49.95; 4. Judge Memorial, 3:51.23; 5. Snow Canyon, 3:58.54; 6. Juan Diego, 3:59.69.

Boys' 400 freestyle relay

1. Wasatch, 3:20.00; 2. Park City, 3:24.42; 3. Desert Hills, 3:24.81; 4. Stansbury, 3:26.92; 5. Spanish Fork, 3:30.34; 6. Judge Memorial, 3:32.41.

Overall girls' standings

1. Wasatch, 317; 2. Judge Memorial, 263.5; 3. Park City, 258; 4. Desert Hills, 246; 5. Snow Canyon, 129; 6. Juan Diego, 108.

Overall boys' standings

1. Wasatch, 379; 2. Park City, 244; 3. Desert Hills, 183; 4. Stansbury, 175; 5. Juan Diego, 148; 6. Judge Memorial, 133.

Johnson had been on podium six times, but finally wins 1st title.
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