The Reno Aquatic Club and Sparks Piranhas recently hosted the annual Age Group Fall Classic and King of the Hill Challenge Meet at the Carson City Aquatic Center.
The Challenge portion of the meet is a multiple-round championship elimination swim of the 50 freestyle over 2 days, starting with the top 64 times for both boys and girls 11 years and up.
The Challenge then continues with the top 32, 16, 8, 6, 4 and 2 times, respectively, from each previous round until there is one boy and girl champion, the King of the Hill. Swimmers also compete in up to three other regular events each day.
This year, 13-year-old Shelby Koontz, a member of the Douglas Dolfins Swim Team, was crowned female King of the Hill.
Koontz's winning, Grand Prix time of 24.33 broke a girls' 13-14 Dolfins team record from 1995 by a half second. She beat out a swimmer from Reno Aquatic by 0.35 seconds in the final elimination swim to claim the winning title.
Several other Dolfins girls performed well in this King of the Hill Challenge.
Shelby Koontz (13), Mary Smithen (17), Shaelin Morefield (15), Emma Gray (13), Kaila Duffy (11) 29.96, Kaela Forvilly (11) 30.09, Rachel Chen (15) 30.13, Anne Lancaster (13) 30.34, and Taylor Sullivan (11) 30.57, all made it in to the top 64 heat.
Smithen, Koontz, Morefield and Gray (28.06) made it into the top 32. Coming in the top 16 were Koontz, Smithen and Morefield (26.40). Mary Smithen (25.21) and Shelby Koontz were included in the top 4 with Koontz eventually winning the trophy.
The Douglas Dolfins boys team had many top King of the Hill competitors as well.
Kyle Johnston (16), Cameron Morefield (17), Janosch Lancaster (17) TJ Smithen (16), Kevin Smithen (14), Adam Dack (14) and Josh Smithen (12) 30.24, all made it into the top 64 group.
Johnston, Morefield, Lancaster, TJ and Kevin Smithen (27.44) and Dack (27.97) made the top 32.
Further eliminations brought Johnston, Morefield, Lancaster (24.92) and TJ Smithen (25.09) into the top 16.
Johnston and Morefield (23.61) kept swimming into the top six.
Johnston was the last Dolfins boy eliminated in the top 4 with a time of 23.19, achieving a new Far Western time and improving his previous best time by 0.44 seconds.