Helena High’s girls, led by sophomore Jesse Ecklund, just missed a trophy at the State Swimming Meet in Great Falls on Saturday.

Helena placed fourth with 106.5 points, just a half point behind third-place C.M. Russell at 107.

Missoula Hellgate swept the Class AA girls and boys championships, with 338 and 289 points, respectively. Capital’s girls placed ninth, Helena’s boys finished 11th, and CHS’ boys came in 13th.

Ecklund placed third in the 200 freestyle in 2:01.32, and tied for third in the 500 free in 5:25.04.

Teammate Kate Murphy posted a third in the 100 backstroke in 1:00.96, and finished fifth in the 100 free in 54.71. Lady Bengal Katie Summers was fifth in the 100 backstroke in 1:01.33.

Helena’s relays (Murphy, Summers, Ecklund, Sarah Krattiger) placed third in the 400 free relay, and fourth in the 200 free relay.

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Capital High’s top swimmer was Avree Klungland, taking sixth in the 100 free.

“The finalists performed very well today, and overall team effort was stellar,” said coach Julie Youngblood, who leads both teams. “A lot of great swims; the majority were at new personal bests.

“This is a great group of kids and a great way to end the season.”

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