By Kevin Milak
FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla., April 11. IT came down to the last night in the combined team race between ME Lyons and Plymouth.
They both had their respective strengths: ME Lyons' dominant distance crew, with two women and three men (finishing first, second and fourth)scoring in the mile; Plymouth with its women’s relay power, going on to win both the 400 medley and 200 free relays.
The final point totals were close, really close, with ME Lyons edging Plymouth by only 16.5 points.
Other top performances of Friday evening included previous event winner Ashley Jones, 15, Joliet, taking the women’s 200 fly in 2:00.98. ME Lyons’ Hank Browning added another title in the men’s 1650, touching first 15:21.88, sixteen seconds ahead of teammate Sean Davis.
The Plymouth Community Y Women won the women's team competition easily with 429.50 points. West Shore was second with 304, and Champaign County IL was third with 230.
The men's team title came down to the final night's relays with Wilton trying to run down ME Lyons. Wilton won both the 200 free relay and the 400 medley relay, but it was not enough to catch ME Lyons' 323 points. Wilton came up short, 11 points back in 312, Darien Y was third with 212 points.
Two new meet records were set, with Tricia Weaner from the West Shore YMCA in Pennsylvania setting the first record on Thursday night in the women's 200 yard backstroke. Her time of 1:58.13 broke the previous record of 1:58.86. Then to finish Thursday evening, the ME Lyons men's 800 free relay team beat the old record of 6:44.77 with a time of 6:43.02.