MIDDLEBURY – It is no secret that Monday is the most despised day of the week. For most people the week could not start out on a lower note.
But for the Warsaw boys swim team, the Northern Lakes Conference meet Monday night was anything but disappointing.
As expected, meet favorite and No. 10 Northridge ran away with the championship with a score of 516, winning eight of the 12 events. The Tigers were the only team that kept the host Raiders from sweeping the final as Warsaw won the other four events and claimed second place with a score of 407.
There was nobody more pleased with Warsaw’s showing than Tiger head coach Nate Long.
“Oh my gosh, we had best times by every single person on this team today,” started Long. “I’m not talking by hundredths of seconds, these were personal bests by half or full seconds. Josh Miller dropped two and half second off of his backstroke. Just all the way across the board everybody was dropping time. Absolutely unexpected.”
There were a lot of dropped times by multiple swimmers from every school on Monday but two times really stuck out above the rest as they both broke record times for the NLC meet.
Northridge’s Spencer Lehman set a new school and meet record in the 500 free with his time of 4:40.67. But Warsaw was not to be outdone as Tiger standout Spencer Davidson saved his best for last, or second to last.
Davidson, already claiming first in the 50 free (22.44), swam his final individual race of the night in the 100 breast. Davidson impressed in prelims with a top time of 1:00.78 but that simply was not good enough for this sensational Warsaw swimmer. Davidson crushed his prelim time, the competition and the meet record (58.26) with his time of 57.96.
Davidson’s two titles were obviously a big part of the Tigers second place finish, but another Tiger contributed just as much.
Jayden Parrett, like Davidson, went undefeated in his two individual events. Parrett took first in the 100 back and 100 free. Parrett shaved his prelims time in the 100 back from 53.87 to 53.16. In the 100 free Parrett saw his time cut from 49.19 in the prelims to a finals time of 48.50.
In the 200 medley relay Zach Taylor and Matt Wildman joined Parrett and Davidson as the relay team would come in second with a time of 1:39.73.
Ethan Cook, Davidson, Parrett and Miller claimed another second place finish for the Tigers in the evenings final event, the 400 free relay. The team’s time of 3:19.84 was second only to Northridge’s time of 3:14.46.
The Tigers had no other champions or first place finishers but did have several third place swimmers.
Miller took third in the 100 back with a 54.53, besting is prelims time of 56.88. Taylor claimed third in the 200 IM with a time of 2:03.12, Taylor’s prelim time was 2:06.56. The Tigers 200 free relay team of Wildman, Cook, J.D. French and Hudson Snyder took third with a time of 1:34.32.
In diving Warsaw was represented by Nick Bell and Tyler Paseka. Bell finished ninth with a 270.95 while Paseka finished tenth with a 264.50.
[*** ERROR: Weaver X-Plus Shortcoder undefined id: 'spo-photo' *** ]
Looking ahead Long wants to make sure his team stays focused with sectionals right around the corner.
“We just want to make sure we start tapering well towards the end of the season,” said Long. “For the guys that should do well in sectionals, we want to get them to taper the right times so they can do well in sectionals. Then obviously we hope to have a few guys training for the State Finals.”
When asked what word best described his team’s performance on Monday night Long smiled and replied, “Amazing.”
Warsaw will hosts its own sectional starting with prelims on Thursday, Feb. 20 and concluding with finals on Saturday, Feb. 22. The IHSAA Boys State Finals will be held Feb. 28 and March 1 in Indianapolis.