July 9, 2013

Dalton Dolphins are Blue division champs again

A third straight Chattanooga Area Swim League regular-season title was all but locked up last week for the Dalton Dolphins.

But they still needed to handle Tennessee’s Stuart Heights, and they did just that Monday.

The Dolphins capped their regular-season schedule with a 430.5-318.5 road win to clinch the Blue Division championship. It was their third straight title in the CASL’s highest division. They’ve also won it six times in nine years, taking the crown each year from 2005-07.

The Dolphins (7-1) made their biggest stride toward the championship on July 1 with a 411-357 victory against rival Signal Mountain (Tenn.), which was previously undefeated. The win gave the Dolphins the head-to-head point-differential advantage if a tie occurred, and beating Stuart Heights assured them of no worse that a tie with Signal Mountain at the top of the standings.

“It was more exciting last week when we beat Signal Mountain by 54 points,” Dolphins coach Charles Todd said. “We had to beat them by 37. That was more exciting (than beating Stuart Heights). Now we have to get the kids ready for the City Meet. Signal Mountain and Ooltewah will be strong.”

The City Meet, the CASL’s annual all-division postseason championship, is Friday and Saturday at Baylor School in Chattanooga. The Dolphins have won that title just twice — last year and in 2006 — while Signal Mountain has won it each other year since 2003. Signal Mountain won the Blue Division title in 2003, 2004 and 2008-2010.

Last season, the Dolphins won the regular-season title in similar fashion, splitting the season series with Stuart Heights but winning by a larger difference.

Leading the Dolphins with the maximum 19 individual points in Monday’s meet were Henry Bethel, Taylor Dale and Roman Valdez. Other notable scorers were Alexis Vaughn (18) and Reece Bingham, Jonathan Shaheen and Raul Valdez, each of whom contributed 17.

Other double-digit scorers were Julian Hernandez, Alex Mashburn, Abby O’Ferrall, Hollie Porter, Hannah Smith and Ethan Young, all with 15; Casey Mashburn, Juseth Ramos and Emilio Valdez with 12; Will Haley (11.5); Anthony Calderon (11); and Nicole Seltz (10).

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