Swimmers win senior night
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Boys swim and dive team hosted several schools at home on Thursday, Jan. 12. The meet also marked senior night. The team placed first at the meet beating out the second place team Washburn Rural.
“It was really special saying goodbye to all the seniors,” junior Cameron Hodge said. “I’m glad we could really perform for the seniors.”
Senior team captains, Evan Yoder and Jordan Portela, lead the team winning four events. Yoder won the 200 meter freestyle race in one minute, forty-six seconds and seven tenths of second. Yoder also won the 100 meter butterfly race in 53.30 seconds. Portela won the 50 meter freestyle race in 20.99 seconds, which is 0.09 seconds short of the school record. Portela set the school record in 100 meter backstroke race swimming in 51.52 seconds breaking the school record of 52.35 seconds. Yoder was pleased with his times at the meet.
“It shows me a good place [of] where I’m at leading up to State,” Yoder said.
Yoder and senior teammates Portela, Corey Schultz-Bever, Matthew Wilkus, won the 200 medley relay in 1:40.72. Yoder praised his team for performing well at the meet.
“We’ve been performing pretty good,” Yoder said. “We’ve had a lot of guys go best times and everyone is performing right where they should be at this point in the season.”
Portela set a goal for himself going into one of his last meets at Free State. His goal was to set a new school record for the 50 meter freestyle race.
“I was trying to beat Jack Ziegler’s previous record (20.90 seconds),” Portela said.
Portela may not have achieved his goal, but he did set the school record for 100 meter backstroke race swimming in a little less than a minute faster than the previous school record. Portela remains confident he can set the school record for the 50 meter freestyle race in the remaining meets for the swim team.
“Working on little things in practice,” Portella said. “Working on turns, starts, and getting up to tempo faster [will help me achieve my goal],”
Junior Evan Eskilson added to the swim team’s individual victory count. Eskilson won the 200 meter individual medley swimming in 2:01.08. Eskilson set his personal record in the event and also won the 100 meter freestyle race in 49.25 seconds.
“I’m really excited and just happy about how I swam,” Eskilson said. “I was confident going into my race and then I swam well, so I’m really happy with it.”
Coach Annette McDonald stood at the side of the pool every race to cheer on each swimmer that took the water and was complimentary of her team’s results.
“Today was awesome,” McDonald said. “I can’t tell you how many people dropped times, significant times.”
McDonald has high expectations for the team at the State competition.
“[I expect them] to be in the top three and to bring home a trophy,” McDonald said.
Eskilson and Yoder have high expectations of themselves for the remainder of the season.
“I want to win 100 meter back[stroke] and set the state record,” Eskilson said.
“As long as I’m getting faster and improving, then that’s the ultimate goal,” Yoder said.