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Matsen takes third in state breaststroke; Horyza sets school record in 50 free

Mar 5, 2014 - By Craig Blumenshine, Staff Writer

Riverton's Tyler Matsen swam to an all-state, third-place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke at the Wyoming High School Swimming and Diving Championships over the weekend in Gillette. Matsen's swim of 1:03.02 in the finals, just .02 off a Riverton school record, was more than a half-second faster than his preliminary time of 1:03.55.

Masten, a senior, was one of three Wolverine state-qualifying swimmers and one diver who led the team to a ninth place finish, ahead of Evanston, Sheridan and Casper Natrona. Casper Kelly Walsh won the team championship with 265 points. Matsen also swam the 100-yard butterfly and finished 14th with a time of 59.25.

"We were watching the rankings close. We thought there was a good opportunity, and the door was open. I think we had a good state meet," Riverton head coach Jay Dayton said.

Senior Erik Horyza set a Riverton High School record in the preliminaries of the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 22.67 and went on to capture eighth place in the finals with a time of 22.74.

Travis Fisher, a sophomore, swam a 57.93 in the 100-yard butterfly to finish 10th.

"That's a great time for a sophomore," Dayton said.

Fisher also swam in the 100-yard backstroke and placed 13th with a time of 59.91.

Justyn Root, a junior, competed in 1-meter diving and placed 14th with a score of 210.45.

The Wolverines also swam in three relay events. The team of Baylor Beers, Matsen, Horyza and Fisher placed seventh in the 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:30.00 and also swam to a ninth-place finish in the 200-yard medley relay with a time of 1:47.50.

Root, Beers, Jonathan Gunther and Adrian Cook placed 12th in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:50.98.

Dayton said it is "critical" that more swimmers enter high school next year and go out for swimming as freshmen after swimming the the middle school and USA swim programs.

"I'm losing five out of 11 swimmers this year. It is extremely important that kids come up as freshmen. There are a lot of kids out in the USA program, but those kids are four or five years out," Dayton said.

Dayton also coaches the Riverton Middle School swimming program that begins practice March 17.

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