Members of the South West Aquatic Team (SWAT) broke several state records in recent competitions.
Coach Mark Schrank knew he had a group of swimmers that had the potential to do something special. "We had high hopes for this season, and we had these records in our sights," Schrank said.
Carolyn Jungers set a standard in the 9-10-year-old girls 100-yard breaststroke of 1 minutes, 13.72 seconds in the Wisconsin LSC regional at Waukesha South High School. The previous record of 1:13.94 was one of the oldest-standing state records, set in 1981. In addition to breaking the state record, Jungers' swim was the fastest in the United States for her age group this season.
At the same meet, Jungers, Lauren Stigler, Ashlyn Schoof and Lauren Konopka broke the state record for the girls 9-10-year-old 200 freestyle relay in 1:53.35, breaking the old mark of 1:53.67 set in 2000 by the Badger Aquatic Team of Madison.
The SWAT girls broke yet another state record in the "A+" meet held at the Schroder Aquatic Center in Brown Deer. Jungers, Stigler, Schoof and Ellie Szczupakiewicz joined forces to swim the 200 medley relay in 2:04.97, shattering the old record of 2:06.45 set in 2000 by the Lake Country Swim Team of Hartland.
SWAT captured third in 12 & Under Wisconsin State Championships at the University of Wisconsin Natatorium in Madison.
"Our kids worked hard all season," Schrank said. "We especially focused on technique for quick starts and turns, and that made all the difference."
Ricky Perez reigned over the 11-12-year-old boys 100 breaststroke, earning a state championship in 1:11.24. Perez took second in four other events, including the 50 breast, 200 breast, 100 individual medley and 200 IM, and placed fourth in the 11-12-year-old boys all-around individual point standings.
Fellow 11-12 year old boys Joe Szczupakiewicz, Tyler Shrank, Tom Stigler, Joe Paquette and Matthew Gilson also had excellent performances. Szczupakiewicz took second in the 1000 free, third in the 200 free and 200 butterfly and finished in the top eight in two other events. Shrank had top-eight finishes in the 1,000 free, 100 back, 200 back and 400 IM. Tom Stigler placed seventh in the 50 breast. Perez, Paquette, Stigler and Gilson joined forces to place second in the 200 free relay.
"Anytime you see swimmers in the top eight places for the 'iron man' events like the 200 butterfly, 400 IM and 1,000 freestyle, you know the miles of training have paid off," Schrank said of the 11-12-year-old boys.
Ashlyn Schoof led the 10-and-under girls, capturing the state championship in the 100 fly in 1:08.55 and placing second in the 50 free and 50 back, third in the 100 free and 100 back and sixth in the 200 IM. Schoof's efforts placed her third among all 10-and-under girls in the individual all-around point standings.
Lauren Stigler powered her way to a state championship in the 10-and-under girls 50 breast in 34.51. Stigler had an excellent all around meet, placing second in the 100 breast, fourth in the 100 IM, fifth in the 200 free, 500 free and 200 IM and sixth in the 50 free. Stigler took fifth place among all 10-and-under girls in the point standings.
The 200 medley relay of Schoof, Stigler, Lauren Konopka and Ellie Szczupakiewicz seized first first place for the 10-and-under girls. Szczupakiewicz placed fifth in the 100 fly, seventh in the 100 back and eighth in the 50 fly.
Katie Taylor had several personal bests, including placing eighth in the 100 back and 200 IM for the 9-10-year-old girls.
For the 11-12 year old girls, Katrina Konopka placed in the top eight in five of her events including fourth in the 100 fly, fifth in the 50 fly, sixth in the 50 back, seventh in the 100 free and eighth in the 100 back. Carolyn Jungers took sixth in the 50 breast. Amanda Marciniak, Elizabeth Streim, and Kelly Howell contributed to several relays that placed in the top eight.
"We've got a great group of young swimmers who have bright futures," Schrank said.
SWAT finished fourth and produced several state champions in the 13-and-over Wisconsin State Championships at Waukesha South High School.
Brittney Walsh earned state championships in four events. Walsh, a long-distance specialist, dominated the field, taking top honors in the women's 400 individual medley, the 500 free, the 1,000 free and 1,650 free.
Jack Lennertz owned the 15-16-year-old boys butterfly events, easily cruising to state championships in both the 100 and 200 fly.
"Jack was born to swim butterfly, and a lot of swimmers could learn from his technique," SWAT head senior coach Bob White said.
Emma Szczupakiewicz led the 13-14-year-old girls, placing second in the 100 back and 200 fly, and placed third in the 200 back and the 100 fly. Liz Bishop captured third in the women's 200 IM. Briana Chu, Grace Paquet, Rachel Howard, Hope Borland and Sarah Schneider placed in the top eight in one or more events.
Mike Lucchesi improved his times, taking second in the men's 200 free and third in the 100 free. Jonathan Roberts took second in the 13-14-year-old fly. Matt Jungers had a strong showing in the 15-16 backstroke events, taking third in the 100 and 200 back. Josh Lefeber came in third in the 13-14-year-old 1,000 free. Other boys placing in the top eight for one or more events included Matthew Briggs and Patrick Walsh.
More information about SWAT may be found on the Internet at swimswat.org.
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