Boys swimming: Barrington reclaims MSL championship

 
By Andrew Younger
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 2/9/2019 8:39 PM
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Saturday's Mid-Suburban League boys swimming meet saw some 20-year-old records shattered as Barrington set its sights on another conference championship.

Winning almost every individual event and having two impressive relay victories under their belts, the Broncos dominated the competition and reclaimed their title as conference champions with a score of 273. Not far behind the Broncos was defending champion Fremd with a score of 250, Conant finished third with a score of 164.

Hersey (134), Prospect (131), Buffalo Grove (125), Palatine (112), Elk Grove (57), Hoffman Estates (22), Schaumburg (12), and Wheeling (9) rounded out the standings.

The Broncos came to this year's conference meet ready to race. The medley team of Griffin O'Leary, Jack Hoppe, Sam Burrell, and Steven Fischer ignited both the deck and stands with excitement after a phenomenal first-place finish, crushing both the pool and MSL records and posting a state qualifying time of 1:35.91. This relay team would also go on to take first in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:27.83, breaking yet another pool record.

Hoppe would follow the Broncos' medley relay victory with a first-place finish in the 200 free and then again later in the meet in the 100 breaststroke, with times of 1:44.48 and 1:00.02 respectively.

"I'm just really happy of how we all did today," said Hoppe." All the hard work we've been putting in practice and all the little things we've been working on at the end are really starting to show, and that's really exciting. We're confident we'll be in a good spot for sectionals and state."

Fischer went on to win the 50 free in a time of 22.02 and claimed fourth in the backstroke (53.92), while teammate Burrell would win the 100 free in a time of 48.46.

Making his varsity conference debut was freshman O'Leary, who placed first in the butterfly with a time of 52.23 and in the backstroke with a pool and MSL record breaking time of 50.78.

Another big contributor to the Broncos' success was Daniel Langlois, who would place second in the 200 individual medley (2:00.79), while also recording a victory in the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:48.30.

"After practice the boys will stay a few minutes after and coach one another," said Barrington coach John Valentine. "They learn just as much from each other as from our coaching staff. It's some of the best team camaraderie we've had in a while and it's really helping some of our younger guys feel right at home in the program."

Fremd also had a stellar meet and showed off its depth, while claiming an exciting relay victory to finish things off.

Viking swimmer Yoochan Lee placed second in both the 50 and 100 frees, posting times of 22.05 and 48.54 respectively, while teammate John Ponte would secure third for Fremd in both the 200 free (1:47.66) and the 500 free (4:54.50).

Closing the meet was the Fremd 400 free relay team of Ponte, Shoya Yamazaki, Max Li, and James Steininger, who won the event in a spectacular time of 3:18.33.

Vikings coach Andrew Kittrell was very proud of his team's overall performance stating, "We swam with a lot of confidence and it showed. The boys did a really great job overall and we just love the competition here".

Conant's Justin Lim and Dylan Pokorny led the Cougars in individual events, while diver Caleb Savory had a lot of success on the boards, scoring 409.95 and placing second overall.

Lim placed second in the 100 fly (53.10) and Pokorny placed fourth in both the 200 I.M. (2:04.59) and the breaststroke (1:02.42).

Hersey maintained solid standings in the relays, with Jack Blumenfeld claiming sixth in the 100 free (50.62), while Gavin Hill was able to break into the top six places in the 50 free (22.27) and the 500 free (4:57.69).

Huskie diver Nicholas Nocita dominated the boards, scoring well ahead of his competitors with an outstanding score of 488.50.

Prospect also had a phenomenal showing with freshmen Tim Hays and Kevin Soltys performing exceptionally well. Hays won the 200 I.M., posting an impressive time of 1:56.96 and stealing the only event victory away from the Broncos. Hays would go on to tie for second with teammate Soltys in the backstroke, posting the same times of 53.35. Soltys would also place sixth in the butterfly (55.08).

Buffalo Grove's Daniel Verdico placed second in both the 200 free (1:47.45) and the 500 free (4:49.32).

"I worked on one thing at practice -- fast turns in and out of the wall, "said Verdico." And it was certainly a big help today."

Rolling Meadows' Jacon Hardt placed third in the 200 I.M. with a time of 2:04.40.

Palatine's Stefan Filip placed sixth in the 200 I.M., while teammate Christian Snyder got fifth in the 50 free (22.53) and third in the fly (53.46).

Other standout swims included Elk Grove's Adrian Wlodarz (3rd place in the 100 at 49.22) and the breaststroke (1:02.53).

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