By Tyler Shoberg
Well, the streak had to end sometime.
On Saturday, West Fargo's attempt to successfully retain the East Region title for a possible fourth straight year was thwarted by Fargo North during the conference meet at the Spartans' home pool.
The numbers and times were photo-finish close, but in the end it was North that pulled away with 369 points and five event titles. The Packers were a close second, getting edged by a mere 16 points.
For their efforts, West Fargo had several highlights, which included five titles of their own, as well as five swimmers named All Conference: Adam Smestad, Cole Holien, Daniel Hulbert, Ethan Doll and Nick Huseby.
Sophomore Doll and junior Smestad came away as the most decorated Packers with two individual titles apiece, as well as swimming legs with the winning 400 freestyle relay team.
One of Doll's crowns came in the 100 butterfly, where he grabbed first in 56.34 seconds to beat out the runner-up by more than a second. He also successfully defended his crown in the 500 freestyle, grabbing first in 5 minutes, 3.61 seconds and beating out the next closest competitor by a whopping 12 seconds.
Doll also swam a leg with the 400 freestyle relay team, along with fellow Packers Huseby, Smestad and Hulbert. The foursome successfully defended West Fargo's title in the event with a time of 3:25.32.
Smestad's two individual titles came in the 50 and 100 freestyle, in which he finished in 23.24 seconds and 50.05 seconds, respectively.
Other top finishes came from Hulbert, who placed runner-up in the both the 200 freestyle and 100 breaststroke. Huseby had a second-place finish in the 200 individual medley, and a third-place finish in the 100 backstroke.
West Fargo now must prepare for the State boys swimming and diving meet, which takes place Friday-Saturday at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks. The Packers will be looking to improve on last year, when they finished runner-up to Minot.