Tarpons sweep Bayou District titles again


South Lafourche's Cody Guidry (top) edges past Thibodaux's Logan LeBlanc in the 200-yard freestyle on Monday in Cut Off. (Photo by Keyon K. Jeff/Correspondent)


CUT OFF — Cooler temperatures and a little rain couldn't dampen South Lafourche's streak of swimming supremacy in the Bayou High School District Championship Meet.

The Tarpon boys won their 13th consecutive district championship, and the girls their 11th straight title on Monday afternoon at the Cut Off Youth Center.

"I'm proud of all my seniors, all of my kids. I'm just ecstatic to bring another championship back to South Lafourche," Tarpons swim coach Corey Callais said. "Temperatures dropped a little, but the kids fought through it. I give credit to the whole district. To come out here just to compete in water temperatures like this, it shows how tough of a sport swimming is."

South Lafourche won nine of 11 boys events and earned 569 points to take the title, followed by Terrebonne (335), South Terrebonne (232), Central Lafourche (193), H.L. Bourgeois (185), Berwick (175), Thibodaux (108), Patterson (86), Ellender (7) and Central Catholic (5).

On the girls side, South Lafourche won six of 11 events and garnered 500.5 points, followed by Terrebonne (274.5), South Terrebonne (274), Central Lafourche (270), Berwick (204), H.L. Bourgeois (157), Thibodaux (144), Patterson (16), Ellender (13).

Tarpon swimmers Nicholas Guidry and Cody Guidry were named the boys MVPs, each winning two individual races and earning 40 points.

Likewise, Natalie Dufrene of South Lafourche and Payton Gold of South Terrebonne shared girls MVP honors, also winning a pair of races and gaining 40 points.

Gold shattered two district meet records in the girls' 50-yard freestyle (26.18 seconds) and the girls' 100-yard freestyle (56.50). She lowered both marks by more than a second.

"There's a lot of good competition out here. I feel like all the hard work is paying off," Gold said. "I feel like I'm accomplishing all of the goals I'm trying to reach."

Dufrene had easy wins in the girls 200-yard and 500-yard freestyle events and anchored a dramatic come-from-behind victory in the 200-yard freestyle relay, edging out Amber Bonvillain of Central Lafourche by 0.16 seconds.

Nicholas Guidry won the boys 200-yard individual medley and 100-yard breaststroke, while Cody Guidry comfortably won the boys 100-yard backstroke and narrowly beat out Thibodaux's Logan LeBlanc in the 200-yard freestyle

"It's amazing. I worked all year for this. It was a dream of mine, and I accomplished it," Cody Guidry said. "We have so many dedication swimmers this train is going to go on for years and years. We're not going to stop here. We were going 20 years undefeated, 30 years. It's just going to go on and on."

Instead of breaking the Tarpons, the pressure to keep the streak going has seem to strengthened their resolve

"I use the streak to challenge my seniors every year. Do you want to be the group that ends it?" Callais said. "They've used it as an inspiration every year."

For Terrebonne coach Amy Williams, finishing in second on both the boys and girls events was a tremendous feat in itself.

"I felt that if every kid did what he was supposed to do we couldn't pull out a second," Williams said. "I knew the girls' side was going to be a battle and come down to last event. That's exactly what it did. Half a point of swimming is nothing."

With a month before the Louisiana High School Association's state swimming meet in Sulphur, preparation includes a delicate mix of rest and enhanced practices.

As a freshman in 2012, Gold placed second in the 100-meter freestyle and third in the 50-meter freestyle. She wants to reach the top of the podium this year.

"Right now it's crunch time," she said. "My coach is giving me different workout routines for in the water and out of the water. It's getting intense."

South Lafourche boys and girls finished third last year in the Division II state meet. Callais is already devising a plan so the Tarpons can bring home the title.

"I'll give them a few days rest to recover, rest their muscles. On Monday, we're just going to hit it hard," he said. "I'm going to challenge the kids. How much do they want it? We're going to work hard and see what we can do at state."