(Federal Way, WA) With the State Diving Championships in the books on Thursday, Friday was time to turn our attention to the racing. All 3 classifications held their preliminary heats on Friday. 4A is in the morning this year, 2A/1A afternoon and 3A in the evening.

In this story we are giving a quick overview of each preliminary meet with stand-out times and performances.

Link to our State Championship Diving Coverage

4A Swim Preliminaries

The 4A’s Prelim meet started off with a bang with Newport hitting an All-America Consideration time in the 200 Medley Relay stopping the clock in 1:33.31. Skyline qualified 2nd and Eastlake 3rd.

In the 50-free after some confusion we were able to confirm that Tolu Young of Curtis did not set a new State and Meet record in a time of 19.86 missing the mark by 5/100ths of a second behind Matt King of Glacier Peak’s time of 19.81 in 2020. But Young’s time was an automatic All America time. That wasn’t the only excitement in the 50-yard free as Newport’s Liam Campbell also cranked out an automatic All America time of 20.19.

Tolu Young’s amazing 50-yard dash

In the 100 Backstroke, Andy Gelstrom had an All America consideration time as the top qualifier. Gelstrom from Hanford stopped the clock in a fast 50.10. In the 100 Breast there was an automatic All America time set by the top qualifier Connor Brown from Eastlake in 54.73. Plus 2 AAC’s for 2nd qualifier Charles Lee from Skyline in 56.44 and 3rd fastest Jonah Medvinsky from Redmond in a time of 56.69.

Connor Brown’s AAA performance in the Breaststroke

The finals look like they are setting up to be a battle for the Championship with Newport maybe with the edge qualifying 12 in the top 8 along with 3 top qualifiers. Curtis is digging in to defend their Title with 11 in the top 8 and 2 top qualifiers. Eastlake also has 2 top qualifying times and will have 6 overall top 8. Sumner, Redmond, Union and Hanford all have 1 top time. Skyline has 10 top 8’s, Union 9 and Wenatchee 8.

The 4A Meet begins at 8:30am Saturday morning at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way.


2A Swim Preliminaries

Some great competition setting up for the afternoon on Finals Saturday with the biggest splash made by Bellingham’s Miles Cratsenberg where he grabbed an automatic All America time in the 500 Free with an amazing time of 4:28.34. Cratsenberg lapped the entire field on catching his last swimmer on lap 19. Cratsenberg also was the only sub 1:40 in the 200 free with a time of 1:39.42 which was good enough for All America consideration.

Watch Miles Cratsenberg demolish the field in the 500 yard free lapping the entire field

Pullman is returning several Champions and medalists and appear to be ready for a serious run at the State Championship and have 5 top qualifiers. Jake McCoy for Greyhounds is in 4 top qualifier positions with 2 relays and in the 200 Individual Medley and the 100 backstroke. William Miller is the top qualifier in the 100 free to add to their attack,

Jake McCoy pulls away in the 200 IM

Anacortes the defending State Champs already have one title in hand with Zephy Blee winning the Diving competition on Thursday. They have 2 top qualifiers while Bellingham has matches that with both of Cratsenberg’s top times. Quincy and Selah each have 1 top qualifier going into Saturday’s finals.

The 2A/1A Finals meet begins at 1:15pm.

3A Swim Preliminaries

The 3A meet got off to a fast start in the 1st event of the 200-yard medley relay with two finishing with All-America consideration times. The top qualifier was Bellevue with a 1:33.69 time while defending team Champs Mercer Island were the 2nd high qualifiers and an AAC time of 1:34.34.

In the 200-yard free Mercer Island’s Matt Williamson gained an All America consideration with the top qualifying time of 1:40.05. More fireworks in event 3 the 200-yard individual medley when O’Dea’s Jack Skarda blistered the course in 1:48.29 an automatic All America time and top qualifier. The fast times were not done as Evan Liu of Mercer Island settled for the 2nd fastest qualifying time but did so in an AAC time of 1:50.16.

Jack Skarda flies through the 200 IM

The sprints were fast and the 50-free was no exception with 2 times sub 21-seconds. Bainbridge Island’s Jason Nordgren stop the clock in 20.70 and was the top qualifier and an AAC time. Matthew Li of Lake Washington just missed an AAC but was 2nd fastess with a 20.95 just 8/100ths of a second short of the AAC mark.

Williamson wasn’t done with AAC times as he won the 500 free stampeding to a huge win in an AAC time of 4:29.92. He took a break and came back to lead off the 200 Free relay and the Islanders blazed their way to the top qualifier with a 1:25.27 yet another AAC mark.

Mercer Island’s 200 Free Relay

Jack Skarda from O’Dea was back for more in the 100 Breastsroke where he recorded his 2nd automatic All America time of 54.78 and his 2nd top qualifier slot for Saturday. There were two more AAC times in the Breaststroke, Mercer Island’s Emmett Ralston was 2nd fastest with a 56.04 time and Alvin Zhang from Lakeside was also right there with an AAC time of 56.47.

Mercer Island and Bainbridge Island tied for most top qualifiers for Saturday’s finals with 3 each. Bellevue and O’Dea each had 2 and Mount Vernon 1 setting up an interesting run for the State team title.

The night ended with a swim-off for the 200 Freestyle relay where Ingraham and Bishop Blanchet. Ingraham held off Bishop Blanchet to qualify for the medal heat on Saturday.

The 3A Finals meet begins at 6pm Saturday night.


By paulb

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