Ryan Torie has broken a legendary Germantown Academy Pool Record this weekend, swimming a 20.76 in the 50 yard freestyle to take down a 35-year old record.
The old record was set in 1980 by Bart Schneider at a 20.9, who at the time was one of the best high school sprinters in history, and still holds several records from different meets in the area (including the Mid-Atlantic LSC Senior Champs Meet Record in 20.01.
This result shows the cyclical nature that swimming programs can go through. In the late 70’s, then head coach Richard Shoulberg put out one of the best sprinters that high school swimming had ever seen; only to later in his career have the Germantown program become known as one of the best high school distance programs in the country, and in between the two he was training some of the best 200 butterfliers in the country.
Now, under the leadership of new head coach Jeff Thompson, a relative unknown when he was brought in to controversially replace Shoulberg in 2014, the programs sprinters are once again thriving on a combination of swimmers who remain from the Shoulberg era but are now watched by the eye of Thompson.
Numbers are fun to talk about in the moment, and time standards are goals to strive for, but these kind of performances that tie an athlete and a swim back to a specific moment in history, that completes the next chapter in the narrative of the sport back to the beginning of time, that truly make athletes, fans, and writers fall in love with sports time-and-time again.