Two years ago, the South Piedmont Conference transformed into an eight-team, all-Cabarrus County league.
Since then, Jay M. Robinson and coach Beverly Kopelic have had a stranglehold on the SPC in both boys' and girls' swimming, taking back-to-back conference titles in dominant fashion.
But the rest of the SPC pack, especially Cox Mill and Hickory Ridge, appear to be closing the gap.
The Bulldog boys finished fourth at states, closely followed by Cox Mill and Hickory Ridge, which finished sixth and seventh respectively. Concord finished 18th.
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On the girls' side, Robinson placed eighth, while the Chargers were 10th and the Spiders were 19th.
Swimmer of the Year: Chad Heiser, Robinson
Chad Heiser capped his high school career on top of his game.
Heiser, who has been swimming since he was in the second grade, not only won SPC titles in four different events, including the 200 Individual Medley (IM), 100 breaststroke and 200 IM (relay) and 400 freestyle relays, but also won the 200 IM and 100 breaststroke at the 3A West Regionals.
Heiser, a two-time SPC Swimmer of the Year, also won a state championship in the 200 IM and just missed out on another, finishing second in the state in the 100 breaststroke.
Coach of the Year: Beverly Kopelic, Robinson
Beverly Kopelic and her Robinson boys' swim team came into the season expecting great things.
The Bulldogs delivered one of best seasons in school history, not only repeating as SPC champions, but also finishing second at the 3A West Regional meet, behind Charlotte Catholic, and fourth at the 3A state meet.
While Kopelic and company lose their leader in Heiser to graduation, they also have a young core that could make the 2011-12 season just as good.
All-Cabarrus News boys' swim team
50 free - Adam Mulchi, Hickory Ridge: Won both SPC and regional championship in 50.
100 free - Zack Lambert, Hickory Ridge: Regional champ finished third in the state.
200 free - Michael Dilks, Mount Pleasant: SPC champ, also finished eighth at states.
500 free - Austin Rohrer, Concord: Spiders' star finished eleventh at states in this event.
100 breaststroke - Chad Heiser, Robinson: SPC champ also placed second at states.
100 backstroke - Zack Lambert, Hickory Ridge: Regional champion finished second at states.
100 Butterfly - Griffin Fiedler, Robinson: Sophomore finished third at states.
200 IM - Chad Heiser, Robinson: 3A state champion also SPC Swimmer of the Year.
200 free relay- Mount Pleasant (M. Dilks, Devan Jarman, Spencer Kiessling, Kody Rice): SPC champions also finished 4th at state meet.
400 Free Relay - Cox Mill (Nick Cannon, Kyle Cicenia, Preston Roycroft, Ethan Garrison): Talented group closed strong with finishing second in the state in this event.
200 medley relay - Robinson (C. Heiser, G. Fiedler, Tyler Gomez, C.J. Herron): SPC and regionals champions in this event.
Swimmer of the Year: Hunter Rogers, Robinson
Hunter Rogers is just a sophomore, but Robinson's top female swimmer is already performing well beyond her years as she was named SPC Swimmer of the Year.
Rogers, who won both the 100- and 200-yard freestyle at the SPC conference meet, showed her versatility at the state meet, finishing fifth in the 200 freestyle and fourth in the 500 freestyle.
Rogers was also a big part of the 200- and 400-freestyle relay teams that both won SPC titles.
The best about Rogers is that she also has two more years at Robinson, where she could become one of the school and the county's best swimmers.
Coach of the Year: Jamie Carter, Cox Mill
Last year, Jamie Carter accepted the daunting task of starting the Cox Mill swimming program from scratch.
Only two seasons later, Carter has her Chargers' girls' and boys' teams near the top of the SPC, the West Region and the state.
The Cox Mill girls made big strides this season, not only finishing second in the conference, but also sixth in the region and tenth at the state meet.
The Chargers' core of talent, including Bethy Beard and Lexi Wrist, will be back to challenge Robinson for conference supremacy next season.
All-Cabarrus News girls' swim team
50 free - Bethy Beard, Cox Mill: SPC champion was third at regionals, fifth at states.
100 free - Hannah Sommerville, Cannon: Senior was CISAA champion.
200 free - Hunter Rogers, Robinson: SPC champ placed fifth at states.
500 free - Hunter Rogers, Robinson: SPC Swimmer of the Year showed versatility, finishing fourth at states in the event.
100 breaststroke - Maija Roses, Cannon: Freshman was CISAA champ, also set school-record in this event.
100 backstroke - Jessica Gomez, Robinson: Junior already SPC's best backstroker.
100 butterfly - Lexi Wrist, Cox Mill: Another freshman who dominated SPC in her event.
200 IM - Addison White, Robinson: Multi-talented White was SPC champ, seventh at states.
200 free relay - Robinson (Rogers, White, Sydney Kopelic, Grace Koontz, Taylor Carroll): SPC champions placed ninth at states.
400 free relay - Robinson (Rogers, White, G. Koontz, Maria Buck): SPC champions were third at regionals, fifth at states.
200 medley relay - Cox Mill (B. Beard, L. Wrist, Erin Wells, Emily Lanpher): Charger quarter finished sixth at states in this event.