The Winhawk boys swim and dive program had another great showing at the University of Minnesota and left with a seventh-place finish out of 12 teams. Here is the final point total: first, Breck/Blake, 2144; second, St. Thomas, 1955; third, Northfield, 1950.5; fourth, Sartell, 1847; fifth, Alexandria, 1441.5; sixth, Simley, 1429; seventh, Winona, 1357.5; eighth, Sauk Rapids, 1179; ninth, Austin, 1089.5; 10th, Hibbing, 1058; 11th, Melrose/Sauk Center, 1039.5; and 12th, Grand Rapids, 995.5. For True Team meets, each team is allowed four entries per event, and all four will score pending disqualification.
As a team, Winona had a pretty good day. The guys did get a little break from the constant hard training they are used to, and there were 27 of 32 season best swims at this meet — a very good performance considering the timing of the season! These boys did well and now have two dual meets left, then have to focus on getting ready for Championships!
The meet began with some good medley relays. Winona’s D relay finished 40th in 2:10.10, which included the team of Jad Al-Balawi, Ian Loos, Elijah Vieth, and Baker Swenson. In 35th was the Winhawk C relay in 2:06.64. That was the team of Kyle Coudron, Colten Brand, Colin White and Jared Loos. The Winona Senior High School B relay — Gavin Nelson, Briar Volkman, Cully Olsen and Aidan Mohan — took 32nd in 1:59.05, and the A relay came in 27th in 1:54.23: Ethan Evenson, Nick Brand, Brayden Coudron, and Jorge Olvera.
The 200 freestyles started to show this team’s strengths. Alex Jorgenson was Winona’s top finisher as he took third with a new season best of 1:47.80. Tanner Lozenski was eighth in 1:50.83, Evenson 38th in 2:07.02, and White in 42nd.
In the 200 Individual medley, the boys had some crazy-good time drops! Vieth dropped six seconds to finish at 2:33.48, good enough for 40th. Swenson dropped 10 seconds to finish at 2:27.96, earning him 35th. Then the team’s strong duo of Jon Broas and Julius Hanson dropped time, as well, to finish 23rd and 26th at 2:15.94 and 2:17.94, respectively.
Jack Herczeg led from the start to win the 50 freestyle in 21.29, Tony Coudron took 24th, Jorge Olvera 40th, and Jared Loos 43rd. Devon Dulek had one of his best dive meets ever and took fourth place among a very strong group of divers with 359.10 points. Mohan had a great day, too, with his 13th-place finish in a new personal best 245.60.
Grant Wolner had a very fast 100 butterfly as he re-set his school record and won the event in 52.05! Tony Coudron had a great swim, dropping time to 57.96, good for 17th. Broas dropped a good amount of time as he placed 25th in 1:00.38, and Brayden Coudron was right behind him in 26th with his 1:00.96.
Herczeg led the 100 freestyle from the start and set a new meet record in 46.25! Nick Brand took 32nd, Nelson took 38th, and Ian Loos took 42nd.
Jorgenson and Lozenski raced again to some top-eight finishes, this time in the 500: Jorgenson finished third, right behind the defending state champion Spencer Pruett from Breck/Blake with Northfield winning the event. Lozenski came in at seventh at 5:04.69, Hanson at 20th, and White at 34th.
The 200 free relay again saw WSHS’ top relay disqualified — a tough result to swallow for coaches and swimmers alike. The A relay responded again by pumping the team up, and it showed in the results. The Winona B relay took 21st at 1:38.89: Olvera, Broas, Hanson, and Lozenski. Their C relay — Jared Loos, Swenson, Mohan, and White — took 30th, and the D relay 34th in 1:51.41, which included Olsen, Volkman, Colten Brand, and Ian Loos.
In backstroke, these young men showed their versatility for the next few years: in 24th was Brayden Coudron in 1:02.41, Evenson in 25th in 1:03.78, Nelson was 32nd in 1:05.16, and Kyle Coudron made 40th in 1:12.16. Keep in mind, these are three ninth graders and an eighth grader! It should be a sight to watch these guys progress over the years.
In the breaststroke, four new personal bests were made, and Grant Wolner set a new school record as he took second in the event in 58.07. Brand came in 24th, Olvera placed 31st, and Volkman 38th in 1:14.62.
The last event, the 4x100 free relay, was a fun one. The A relay swim saw Winona and Breck Blake battle to the finish. Breck Blake got the hand to the wall before WSHS, and it will be fun to see the rematch at State in a month! That A relay consisted of Jorgenson, Lozenski, Wolner and Herczeg, finishing in 3:13.02. Winona’s B relay took 15th in 3:37.47: Tony Coudron, Brayden Coudron, Hanson, and Nick Brand. Winona’s C placed 25th, which was the team of Jared Loos, Broas, Nelson, and Evenson. Finally, the D relay took 31st in 3:59.41: Olsen, Ian Loos, Swenson, and Winona’s newest, Volkman! (The Minuteman achievement is when a swimmer goes under one minute in the 100 freestyle for the first time.)
Now it’s back to the grind for the next few weeks for these swimmers before the Conference and Section meets. The team also has two more dual meets this week and, with the weather, it’ll certainly be interesting!