Firestone senior Andrew Bartley competed during this entire swimming season knowing opponents targeted him in the 100-yard breast stroke.
Rival swimmers knew Bartley won the Division I state title in the event last year as a junior and were hungry to dethrone him.
They fell short Saturday night when Bartley defended his state title in the 100 breast stroke in a time of 55.91 seconds at C.T. Branin Natatorium.
“This is definitely more special than winning it the first time," Bartley said. “When you are the reigning champ, it doesn’t look good to get taken down by someone else. You have to defend that title. As soon as you get it, you have to hang onto it. I feel great. I did what I wanted to do."