This weekend was loaded with impressive swimming. From high school meets, to international meets, to age group swimming, there was a lot going on.
But when three high school swimmers go 53 seconds in the 100 yard breaststroke in the same race, and all three break both the public and overall High School National Records, it would take something ridiculous to keep upend that final from the North Coast Section Championships from winning this award.
Each swimmer has their own story that makes this race extra special. Steven Stumph from Campolindo won the race, and walks away as the National Record holder, for now. Charlie Wiser from Miramonte High School only trains as a swimmer for about four months a year. The rest of the time, he spends training for water polo (he’ll play both sports at Stanford next year.) Now, breaststroke is probably the best stroke for a water polo player (the egg beater kick builds the right muscles), but for a stroke as technical as breaststroke, it’s hard to imagine someone going that fast at such a young age while only specifically training for it part time. Pablo Morales did it in the 1980’s, also for Stanford, but sp0rts have gotten so much more specialized since then.
And then there’s Nick Silverthorn from Granada, the junior, who could break Stumph’s record next year. When he was 14, he broke the National Age Group Record in the 200 free. At the time, he was very good, but certainly nowhere near national record-breaking, in the 100 breaststroke. Now, he’s developed into one of the best high school breaststrokers ever. A high school junior who goes 1:36.9 in the 200 yard free, and a 53.6 in the 100 yard breaststroke? That’s a rare combination, and if he continues to develop, he could really be a special talent.
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