MUNSTER | Joey Gardner's performance in the 100-yard breaststroke was but a microcosm of how Munster would fare at its own sectional meet on Saturday.
Gardner, who finished his breaststroke in 1:00.17 in Thursday's preliminaries, shattered that time by winning the event in 56.37 seconds, eclipsing both a pool and sectional record.
"I can't say I was saving it (for the finals)," Gardner said. "My mind just wasn't in the right place. I knew, come finals, I would do a lot better."
It was just one of many stellar swims the Seahorses would execute in the meet, as they earned their state record-extending 29th consecutive sectional championship after compiling 470 points.
"We're happy -- it was a total team effort," Munster coach Matt Pavlovich said. "We had a lot of kids step up on Thursday to get in that top eight. That's what it's about -- trying to win another championship."
Gardner also won the 200 individual medley in 1:51.97, setting a new pool and sectional record while trimming more than six seconds off his preliminary time.
Munster also took the 200 medley relay (1:34.32) and 400 free relay (3:11.18). Wilson Beckman won the 100 free (46.43) and 100 back (50.17).
"We hope to get top 10, maybe top eight (at state)," Gardner said. "Individually, me and Beckman should definitely be top eight in our events. We can't wait for state."
Lake Central's Josh Barajas had one of the biggest time drops of the day in the 200 individual medley, finishing in 1:53.81, under the state cut. Barajas' prelim time was 2:03.08.
"I wasn't really expecting to go 1:53, so when I saw that I was ecstatic," Barajas said. "I felt good during the whole race and came out with a great time."
Barajas won the 100 fly (51.41). Connor Homans won the 50 free (21.38) and the Indians also will send divers Alex Morgan (first, 433.08 points) and Drake Hunt (fourth, 400.53) to Tuesday's Penn Regional. The Indians placed third with 360 points.
Crown Point's lone win came in the 200 free relay (1:28.56). In that race, Andrew Kvachkoff swam a 50 free split of 21.63, which helped the Bulldogs place second with 414 points.
"We weren't supposed to come close in that relay," Crown Point coach Doug Norris said. "We really planned it well because we put our two fast guys (Joey Karczewski and Kvachkoff) in the middle. We had to get that lead."
Highland's Chris Dabrowski won both the 200 free (1:47.53) and 500 free (4:45.70), the latter of which was a little more than a second off the pool record. His performance helped the Trojans place fourth with 311 points.
"I was really happy with that," Dabrowski said of his 500 free. "I was shooting for that pool record. I thought to myself 'Maybe if I went a little faster I could have got it.' I'm really happy with a 4:45."