Max McHugh Splits 22.6 Breaststroke at Wisconsin Sectional Meet

Wisconsin high school swimming has moved into the Sectional round of post-season swimming, which is the last round before next week’s state championship meets, and Max McHugh has put up one of the fastest-ever 200 medley relay breaststroke splits – by a swimmer at any level.

McHugh swims for the Sturgeon Bay Co-Op, and his relay finished 1st in 1:39.61. That result was in large part thanks to McHugh, who split 22.69 on the breaststroke leg. That’s not just the fastest-ever split done by a high school swimmer, but as far as we can tell ties Tennessee swimmer Peter John Stevens for the 2nd-fastest breaststroke split on a 200 yard medley relay at any level (2016 NCAA Championships). Our research hasn’t found a split faster than Chuck Katis‘ 22.64 from the 2015 NCAA Championships.

Unofficial 5-best splits in history:

All-Time Top Performers – 50 Breast Relay Splits (Men)

View Top 17»

Eyewitnesses at the meet said that the splits coincided with what they saw. Sturgeon Bay was in 8th place after the backstroke, but had closed the leg after the breaststroke leg.

Sturegon Bay’s splits:

  • Luke Bousley (back) – 29.89
  • McHugh (breast) – 22.69
  • Brock Aune (fly) – 24.30
  • Evan Smith (free) – 22.73

The fastest split at last year’s NCAA Championship meet was a 22.91 from Texas’ Will Licon. Licon won the 100 breaststroke title later in the meet.

McHugh, a Minnesota commit, also won the 50 free with a 20.57 and is due to lead off Sturgeon Bay’s 200 free relay and swim the 100 breaststroke.

Update: McHugh split 20.63 leading off Sturgeon Bay’s 200 free relay and won the 100 breaststroke in 53.09 (splitting 25.12/27.97)


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Distance Swimmer

And he’s going to Minnesota..


Jillian Tyler: NCAA Champ in breaststroke; Canadian Olympian in breaststroke. Haley Spencer: NCAA champ in breaststroke; USA National Team member in breaststroke. Kierra Smith: NCAA Champ in breaststroke; Canadian Olympian in breaststroke. Conner McHugh: All-American in breaststroke. Jared Anderson: All-American in breaststroke. Josh Hall: All-American in breaststroke.

I think Minnesota, specifically Kelly Kremer, can coach breaststroke.


Agreed. They can produce world class breastrokers. Great get for Minnesota though. Only time will tell if he can impact Minnesota in the way Lilly King did for Indiana.




Great swim for a young dude. WOW! Looks like Minnesota is gonna be very happy. Coach K is a great person and coach, glad for him. Go Gophers!


McHugh could still have won the 50 free… while swimming breaststroke.

40 Flat

Not quite


Have you seen how slow some of these D2 sectionals are? There are schools putting up guys going 30 low in the 50.


Please tell me there is video of this. Gotta see it!

Beverly Drangus

Blows my mind that it’s 2018, every single person at every meet is holding a device that can record and almost instantaneously upload high definition video, and of the four record breaking swims on the front page of swimswam, none of them have a video. Doesn’t everybody know I want to watch these things?

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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