After Colorado superstar Missy Franklin wrapped up her State Championship meet in Colorado, the fun was just beginning. Around the country, there was an unreasonable amount of huge high-school swimming going down that resulted in some fantastic times. There was a National Record, plenty of State marks, and some other very-near-misses on National Marks, abound.
Beginning in Georgia, Matias Koski easily cruised past his own State Record, set yesterday, in the men’s 500 free with a 4:18.57. The mark prior to this meet was held by Koski’s future Georgia teammate William Freeman in a 4:19. Freeman’s mark is still the National Independent High School mark (Koski’s Northview High is a public school).
Earlier in the session, Koski also broke a state record in the 200 free with a 1:36.15. That slashed more than two seconds off of his time from prelims. The runner-up in that race was junior Jimmy Yoder in 1:38.20. He will be a huge catch in next year’s senior class. He would go on to win the 100 fly in 49.09 (ahead of a 49.21 from North Carolina commit Sam Lewis).
That swim is actually a bit short of what Yoder could’ve been expecting – he was a 48.7 in December. Still, he won a great race for the state title, and should easily take down the State Record of 48.86 as a senior.
Lewis would later win the boys’ 100 backstroke in 48.85. He’s a prototypical 100 backstoker/100 butterflier that UNC coach Rich DeSelm does very well with.
In the boys’ 50 free, senior Michael Trice came within .02 of another State Record. His finishing time was 20.48. Parkview’s Ricky Lehner successfully defended his 100 breaststroke title in 56.40. That was well off of his State Record swim from last season.
The star of the day on the women’s side was Mill Creek High School’s Rachael Dudley (who will swim for the Naval Academy next year). She swept the 100 fly (54.46) and 100 back (55.39). Madison Jacobi also swept the 200 and 500 freestyles, including a 4:49.1 in the latter.
Brookwood High, in Snelville, took the women’s title, while Lehner’s Parkview squad won the boy’s title.
As has become a recurring theme of American high school swimming, the Baylor School girls have downed yet another National Relay record. Led by a state record 22.27 leadoff from junior Kristen Vredeveld, the Baylor School girls cruised to a 1:31.18. That dropped the overall National High School record by a second-and-a-half, with the previous best of 1:32.63 being swum by Baylor School last year.
Vredeveld actually was a part of four record-breaking swims on the day. Prior to the two as a part of that relay, she broke her own State Record in the 100 free with a win in 48.67. She was a touch slower in 49.15 leading off the Baylor School’s 400 free relay, but that squad finished in 3:22.99. That quartet, the same that was in the 200 free relay, smashed their old State Record by roughly 5 seconds, and came within 6-tenths of another National High School Record (held by Germantown Academy).
What’s even scarier about the level that this program has risen to is the fact that only Vredeveld and senior Ashley Yearwood are held over from that relay. With three juniors on this squad (Vredeveld, Kimerblee John-Williams, and Bria Devaux) will all be back next year, and could take the mark even lower. This relay was so good that it wouldn’t have finished last at NCAA’s last year.
Meanwhile, Montgomery Bell’s Maclin Davis, fresh off of his National Record in the 100 fly, added a win in the 100 free in 44.84. That left him just a hair short of the State Record of 48.79 held by 2008 Olympian Gil Stovall. Montgomery Bell had three in the A-final of this race, with Adam Cornett taking 2nd in 46.40 and Andrew Dobbs finishing 5th in 46.65.
In 4th-place was a promising freshman named Joey Carbone from the Baylor School in 46.65. He’s got good pedigree, as his older brother Christian won the 200 IM on Friday and the 100 breast on Saturday (56.48).
MBA is truly stacked in the 100 free. With Davis anchoring in a 44.3 (and no Andrew Dobbs or Cornett) they still managed to win the 400 free relay going away in 3:04.68. They could have taken a run at maybe 3:02 if they had put their full relay in.
DC Metropolitan Interscholatic Swimming & Diving Championships
This is one of the most intense, best-covered, and fastest high school meets in the country every year (though it’s not technically a “State Championship”). This year was no different, thanks in part to some incredible swimming by Good Counsel junior Jack Conger.
He really showed off his versatility in this meet – he put up dominant, near-record breaking performances in his two individual swims, and neither of them were his specialty: the backstrokes. What’s more, he won both the 50 and the 500 freestyles, which are the shortest and longest distances on the high school schedule.
First, he posted a 19.85 in the 50 free. That’s his lifetime best by half-a-second. Later in the meet came the real show – he swam a 4:17.51 to win the 500 free in a time that must have surprised even himself (though, in post-race comments, he said he knew that he’d be close). That’s 11-seconds better than his lifetime best coming into the meet, and put a serious scare into the most fabled record on the books – Jeff Kostoff’s 4:16.39 from 1983. At this point, if Conger swims the race again at next year’s meet, it seems inevitable that he would take that record down.
As if that weren’t versatile enough, he also split a 20.4 on the fly leg of Good-Counsel’s medley relay. That’s six-tenths faster than what Maclin Davis, the fastest sprint butterflier in high school history, did on his medley in Tennessee. He also swam a 43.0 on the 400 free relay.
After this meet, Conger (in my opinion) jumps ahead of Ryan Murphy as the top swimmer in the class of 2013.
While Conger took two meet records, two of his old marks went by the wayside. First, Georgia-bound senior Garrett Powell took down Conger’s mark in the 200 free with a 1:38.38. Later, Sean Sullivan took down his meet record in the 100 free in 45.23. Sullivan, a senior at Gonzaga prep, will swim at North Carolina in the fall.
On the women’s side, Whitman’s Charlotte Meyer pulled a huge surprise out of her swim bag to outduel Stanford-bound Sarah Haase in the 200 IM. Meyer posted a record-setting swim in 1:58.19, which took the mark away from Haase, and is a lifetime best by 3.5 seconds. Her progression has been amazing – she’s dropped 3-6 seconds per year each of the last 6 years. Meyer, a junior, is hitting her stride at the right moment and after this swim, should become a focal point of many coaches’ recruiting plans.
Haase, a Good-Counsel teammate of Conger, would rebreak her own State Record later in the meet in the 100 breaststroke, which is the event she is best-known for. She won the 100 breaststroke in 1:00.05.