Loyola flexed its dynasty muscles again at the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference championship meet Saturday at McDonogh, claiming its 25th team title in the last 26 years.
The Dons had the crown all but wrapped up after the morning phase of the day-long event, well before the final swims in the evening on the way to a decisive, 436-265 victory over runner-up McDonogh.
Mount St. Joseph (147 points), Calvert Hall (145), Archbishop Spalding (85) and Gilman (74) followed the leaders.
"I'm getting old, but I'm not sure this ever does," said Loyola coach Keith Schertle when asked if he ever gets tired of compiling title after title. "Seriously, the older I get, I get a little sappier about it all. Before, it was 'swim, swim, win.' Now it's more like 'beat the swimmers you're supposed to beat, and everything will be fine.' In general, we did that today, so that makes me happy."
Junior Cole Buese helped ignite the Dons by winning the first individual final over McDonogh senior Ian Silverman and Loyola teammate Mitch Williams in the 200-yard freestyle after the Eagles triumphed in the 200 medley relay behind seniors Tarik Lott and Kyle Bloom, junior Oliver Schmickel and sophomore Matthew McGoey.
To make matters worse for their A Conference rivals, the Dons dominated the 200 individual medley by sweeping the top three spots with seniors Daniel Moreno and Colin Roddy and junior Zach Hoelting, and then piled on more points after a school-record 50 freestyle by senior Trey Perry in an All-American qualifying time 20.81. The Mount St. Joseph junior tandem of Andrew Sanchez and Collin Turner finished second and third, respectively.
The threesome later finished in the same order in the 100 freestyle.
Senior J. P. Clancy continued the stranglehold on individual winners in the 100 butterfly over Bloom and Loyola junior teammate Kevin Zgorski.
Silverman finally broke the streak by edging Williams and Loyola senior Kevin McCoy in the 500 freestyle before the Dons countered with an All-American winning 1:25.20 for the 200 freestyle relay foursome of Moreno, Buese, Clancy and Perry.
Buese grabbed his second individual banner in the 100 backstroke over Bloom and Hoelting.
Lott beat McDonogh teammate Eric Lang and Calvert Hall sophomore Zach Potter in the 100 breaststroke for the meet's first and only finish without a Don in the top three, although Loyola rebounded with Moreno, Clancy, Perry and Buese winng the 400 freestyle relay.
"It's tradition," said Perry, who posted personal bests in his sprint freestyles. "When we lost [the title] to McDonogh in 2012, coach Schertle said we were the best team ever. That has fueled us to do even better."
Loyola rivals might cringe at the thought of the Dons improving, considering how good they already are.
"They're a tough, formidable and respected opponent," said Calvert Hall coach Patrick Marshall. "They have great depth, they work hard and we're trying to catch them."
1. Loy (436 points)
2. McD (265)
3. MSJ (147)
4. CHC (145)
5. AS (85)
6. Gil (74)
200 medley relay- 1. McD (McGoey, Lott, Scmickel, Bloom) 2. Loy (Hoelting, Roddy, Tomsuden, Clancy) 3. MSJ (Turner, Ganley, Krabbe, Sanchez)
200 freestyle- 1. Cole Buese (Loy) 2. Silverman (McD) 3. Mitch Williams (Loy)
200 individual medley- 1. Moreno (Loy) 2. Roddy (Loy) 3. (Hoelting)
50 freestyle- 1. Perry (Loy) 2. Sanchez (MSJ) 3. Turner (MSJ)
100 butterfly- 1. Clancy (Loy) 2. Bloom (McD) 3. Zgorski (Loy)
100 freestyle -1. Perry (Loy) 2. Sanchez (MSJ) 3. Turner (MSJ)
500 freestyle- 1. Silverman (McD) 2. Williams (Loy) 3. McCoy (Loy)
200 freestyle relay- 1. Loy (Moreno, Buese, Clancy, Perry) 2. MSJ (Turner, Ganley, Lowry, Sanchez) 3. McD (Bloom, McGoey, Stephens, Silverman)
100 backstroke- 1. Buese (Loy) 2. Bloom (McD) 3. Hoelting (Loy)
100 breaststroke- 1. Lott (McD) 2. Lang (McD) 3. Potter (CHC)
400 freestyle relay- 1. Loy (Moreno, Buese, Clancy, Perry) 2. McD (Cosgarea, Lang, Stephens, Silverman) 3. CHC (Cassady, Cather, McCown, Potter)