PHS swimming: James Dye

Philomath's James Dye broke the 500-yard freestyle school record Saturday in a prelim race at the state swimming championships.

Philomath junior James Dye qualified for finals in both the 500-yard freestyle and 100-yard butterfly Saturday during the first day of the Class 4A/3A/2A/1A state swimming championships at the Mt. Hood Community College Aquatic Center.

Dye broke the school record and placed third in the 500 free with a time of 5:00.03. The time was nearly 19 seconds faster than what Dye swam in the district meet, although he was not challenged and pacing himself to perform strong in his other events.

PHS coach Marissa Eng wasn't sure, but believed the previous school record was at least 20 years old. Dye finished just under 6 seconds behind the first-place finisher, Newport's Lucas Ellingson.

Dye placed fourth in the 100 fly prelims with a time of 55.93.

The Philomath girls had a single individual qualify in junior Amity Coon. Competing in the 100-yard breaststroke, Coon came in 10th with a time of 1:14.22, which shaved seven-tenths of a second off her time at districts. It was her first individual race at state.

Philomath's boys qualified two relays for state. The 200-yard medley relay missed reaching finals by one spot with seventh in 1:52.04. Senior Jensen Davis, junior Tristan Pindell, Dye and junior Brandon Enghauser saw legs on the relay.

The 200-yard freestyle relay with junior Jeremy Schaffer, Davis, Pindell and Dye finished ninth in 1:38.18.

The girls' 200-medley relay also reached state and had its fastest time of the season by 4 seconds with a 2:08.12, but the team was disqualified. Freshman Melia Morton, Coon, sophomore Maggie Ross and senior Miriam Coskey swam legs on the relay.

Eng said all six races that Philomath competed in Friday were season-bests.

The team planned to make its traditional dinner trip Saturday night to the Olive Garden.

Sunday's session is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m.



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