Karl Ortegon, a junior on the Evanston Township High School swim team, contributed this report. He was an alternate on the Evanton’s Township medley relay. This is his first state meet.
2/22/13-NEW TRIER HIGH SCHOOL
Consistently one of the fastest high school state meets year after year, New Trier High School geared up once again for another high speed, high-energy meet featuring several age group record holders and several IHSA records on the line.
Going into the meet, Mundelein’s Connor Black and New Trier’s Reed Malone are heavy favorites for double champions, Black in the 50 free and 100 fly, and Malone in the 200 and 500 free.
Some of the most competitive events after sectionals include the 100 fly and 100 back, both of which feature Andrew Jovanovic of Loyola, who won the backstroke in 2011 and the butterfly the last two years. The fly also had a whopping four other swimmers under 50 seconds after sectionals. New Trier’s Jack Mangan looks to finally become champion in the backstroke, with his usual rival in Jovanovic and top seed Alex Snarski, who came in with a 50.04.
Other notables for sprint freestyle are Ryan Held of Sacred Heart Griffin, Mossimo Chavez of Whitney Young and Karol Mlynarski of Niles North, each of them breaking 21 in their sectional. Held and Mlynarski will square off in the 100 free, the only ones sub-46 after sectionals.
In a post-Kevin Cordes/Matt Elliott breaststroke era, the title is more or less up for grabs, featuring top seed Kyle Arena of Lakes and last years runner up Keanu Interone of Sterling, both with 56’s. They are followed by Jae Park of New Trier and Brendan Howley of Wheaton Academy, the only 57’s so far. Park will also be in contention for a finals berth in the 200 IM along with Nick Zito (Addison Trail/Willowbrook) and Alex Keller (St. Anthony’s).
The biggest concern for Malone’s double-champion bid will be Peter Grumhaus of Lake Forest, who has dueled with Malone in the 200 and 500 on several occasions throughout the season– something similar to the competition between Malone and current Stanford swimmer Danny Thomson from Hinsdale Central who holds the IHSA record for the 500.
New Trier will have to fight for relay wins in all 3 relays. Oak Park River Forest is seeded ahead of New Trier in the medley with Libertyville and Lake Forest close behind. NT is 9th in the 200 free relay behind top seeds Waubonsie Valley, Fenwick, and Loyola. Finally, NT is just ahead of Lake Forest and Loyola for the first seed in the 400 free relay.
As far as team standings go, New Trier is favored for another win, which would be a 3-peat for them, just as the girls did in November. Lake Forest, University Normal, Hinsdale Central, and Loyola are all in a good position for an upset, and the 2nd and 3rd place trophies will be closely decided.
DAY 1 PRELIMS RECAP
In a span of four hours, four IHSA records were wiped away, two of which were Matt Grevers’.
New Trier’s Reed Malone started off with a 1:35.60 in the 200 freestyle, breaking Kevin Overholt’s record by 1.6 seconds. Peter Grumhaus (Lake Forest) and Matt Conway (Warren) finished 2nd and 3rd with 1:38s.
Malone also went a 4:21.09 in the 500 followed by Grumhaus (4:26.97) and Kyle Gannon of St. Charles North (4:29.33).
NT went on to send Jae Park to finals in the IM (1:51.31) seeded second behind Nick Zito (1:51.22) of Addison Trail-Willowbrook.
Then, Connor Black of Mundelein set New Trier ablaze with a 19.80 in his 50 free, breaking Matt Grevers’ record from 2003. Four others finished in 20’s, led by Ryan Held (Sacred Heart Griffin) with a 20.37.
Ryan Held also was the only swimmer sub-45 in the 100 free (44.86) followed by 5 other 45s led by Colin Rowe of Lake Forest (45.65).
Conor Black swam again in the 100 fly with a gutsy 47.20 to beat 2-time defending champion Andrew Jovanovic, who finished 47.81. Both of them broke Mike Dominski’s record of 48.19 from 09’. Conway, Alex Snarski (Libertyville), Kyle Ujiiye (Barrington) and Matt Harrington (Libertyville) followed the record breakers each with 49s.
Jovanovic broke Grevers last remaining IHSA record in the back with a speedy 48.21, followed by Snarski with a 49.70, the only swimmers sub 50. Mangan squeezed into the championship final by 5 hundredths.
Matt Salerno (Metea Valley) led the breaststroke pack with a 56.16 followed by Park, Eddie Mapel (Hinsdale Central), Zito, and last year’s runner up Keanu Interone (Sterling) all with 56’s.
200 Medley Relay
New Trier owned the medley relay in a 1:32.09 with Hinsdale Central, Libertyville, and Lake Forest following. It appears Hinsdale and Lake Forrest will be vying for 2nd in the finals. Although Mundelein did not make finals, Connor Black split a 20.94 50 fly, provoking a dumbstruck “OHHH” from the packed house.
200 Free Relay
Hinsdale Central put up an impressive 1:23.05 in the 200 free relay. After the first leg, three swimmers popped 20s. Fenwick and New Trier followed up.
400 Free Relay
New Trier also owned the 400 free relay with a 3:03.90, anchored by Malone in 44 seconds. Lake Forest was 2nd and Hinsdale Central 3rd. Loyola was 6th but Jovanovic anchored in a blazing 43.69!
Connor Black single-handedly stole the show at prelims, and finals should be very entertaining as well.
I also run (@ETHSswim_dive).