Bountiful • The venue has changed and the makeup of the classification is different so maybe the Class 4A boys’ swimming meet might be ripe for some new champions.
And the leading contenders may be from the south, at least on Day 1 of the state meet.
Tall and gangly Desert Hills sophomore Payton Plumb unseated Park City’s Cole Peterson in the 200-yard individual medley as the Thunder rolled into the South Davis Aquatic Center and grabbed a big lead with 121 points — 38 better than Mountain Crest and 60 more than a Park City team that has won four straight boys’ championships.
“I started doing pretty well for myself as a freshman,” Plumb said. “And I was like, ‘I can do great things.’ I’ve got the right body for it. I’m tall.
“I’ve been watching everybody. Sure, I haven’t swam with them, but Cole Peterson — the guy that finished second — I’ve been trying to find out his scores. I’ve been looking them up. I’m a stalker.”
Plumb and Peterson faced each other at last year’s Class 3A state meet. But the 6-foot-3 Plumb, who said he has grown a couple of inches since that meeting, owned the event this time around. Plumb touched in 1 minute, 56.32 seconds, better than 2 seconds ahead of Peterson (1:58.52).
The Desert Hills boys won the 200 medley relay, just edging both Juan Diego and Lehi. Plumb swam the opening leg on that relay victory.
Meanwhile Hurricane junior Ryan Bunn is 5-6 and more reminiscent of a wrestler or football defensive back. But winning at the state meet is nothing new for Bunn, who brought home titles in the 100 and 200 freestyle races last year.
He defended the 200 title by racing in with a time of 1:43.62. That was 2 seconds faster than second-place Austin Butler of Spanish Fork.
“I was scared, nervous,” Bunn said. “Just go out there and swim. It all felt good. I got a little tired there in the end, but I came out and pulled it through.
“… I just kind of go for it and do whatever is necessary.”
It’s been since 2000 that a St. George-area school has claimed a state boys’ swimming team title when Dixie brought home the title.
After the first day, Plumb’s take was clear. Individual honors aside, he was more than a little interested in the team scores.
“I’m doing this for the team because Desert Hills has never won a state championship,” Plumb said. “Until now.”
CLASS 4A DAY 1 STATE CHAMPIONS
Team scores • 1. Desert Hills, 121; 2. Mountain Crest, 83; 3. Juan Diego, 69; 4. Cedar, 69; (tie) Park City, 69.
200 medley relay • Desert Hills 1:40.26
200 freestyle • Ryan Bunn, Hurricane, 1:43.62
200 individual medley • Payton Plumb, Desert Hills, 1:56.32
50 freestyle • Cade Black, Mountain Crest, 21.54
Team scores • 1. Park City, 138; 2. Desert Hills, 89.5; 3. Sky View, 74; 4. Orem, 66; 5. Snow Canyon, 59.
200 medley relay • Park City 1:49.05 (new 4A state record)
200 freestyle • Helena Djunic, Park City, 1:53.76
200 individual medley • Elise Beller, Park City, 2:09.16
50 freestyle • Katie Hale, Park City, 24:13