Cary-Grove's boys swimming team has had no shortage of success when it comes to invitational performances this season.
The team took first at Zion-Benton and Elk Grove and was second at Buffalo Grove and Rockford Jefferson. Cary-Grove also was second at the Buffalo Grove frosh-soph invitational and won the St. Viator freshman invitational.
"I am extremely pleased so far," said Cary-Grove coach Jim Andriakos. "We have a young team (4 seniors). Our varsity has five freshmen/sophomores, so we are in need of experience. Our entire team is comprised of over one-third freshman. Overall, the boys are swimming well and hopefully we'll do well at conference and sectionals."
Cary-Grove's 200 medley relay of Ed Griswold, John Lovejoy, Michael Hamann and Christian Weber has swam a 1:45.17 this season. The 200 relay of Joe Weber, Jon Curtis, Andrew Brierton and Michael Hamann has clocked in at 1:34.58. That relay features 2 sophomores and a freshman. The 400 relay of Christian Weber, Griswold, Brierton and Hamann has hit 3:27.29 so far.
Individually, Christian Weber has recorded a 23.25 in the 50, a 51.74 in the 100 and a 56.93 in the fly.
Hamann has a 49.66 in the 100, a 1:51.80 in the 200 and a 5:03.42 in the 500. He also has a 55.16 in the backstroke, a 1:04.44 in the breaststroke, a 56.51 in the fly and a 2:02.44 in the IM.
Griswold has gone 1:51.76 in the 200, 5:02.32 in the 500 and 56.84 in the backstroke.
Conor Cornelius has a 59.64 in the backstroke, a 58.45 in the fly and a 2:10.83 in the IM. Lovejoy swam a 1:06.45 in the breaststroke, while Joe Weber had a 58.93 in the fly. Paul Blumenkamp went 59.03 in the fly.
Dundee-Crown/Jacobs update: While the Dundee-Crown/Jacobs co-op boys swimming team may be on the young side, that doesn't mean the pool is bereft of talent.
"We're kind of rebuilding," said D-C/Jacobs coach Rick Andresen. "We lost 7 seniors to graduation last year. We've got some talented youngsters, but we don't have a lot of depth."
Jacobs sophomore Alex Elston is one such youngster showing promise. Elston went 54.12 in the fly at Cary-Grove recently - a swim that put him within 0.3 seconds of the state-qualifying standard.
Elston swims the fly in the D-C/Jacobs medley relay along with D-C freshman Kyle Erken, Jacobs sophomore Ryne Quinlan and home-schooled sophomore John Jost.
"We've got a really good group of sophomores and a freshman in that medley relay," said Andresen. "They've done a nice job. They've gone 1:45.75, which is not close to state, but with a young group like this to work with, I'm looking for big things from them in the future."
D-C junior Ryan Krug has gone 1:56 in the 200 freestyle.
"That's his best this year," said Andresen. "He's worked hard."
Jost has recorded a 2:13 in the IM and a 1:06.4 in the breaststroke.
Jacobs Senior Alex Schmidt has excelled in the 50 (22.8) and 100 (50.97).
"Alex is our only senior," said Andresen. "He's done a nice job. He's dedicated himself to swimming this year (used to also play hockey)."
D-C/Jacobs recently won 6 of 11 events against McHenry but did not win the meet.
"We got beat by 20 against them," said Andresen. "We don't have those second and third swimmers right now. We don't have enough depth."
But Andresen does like the swimmers he's working with.
"We have some nice swimmers," said Andresen. "We've got a lot of potential."
Bartlett-Streamwood update: Another young team in the area is the Bartlett-Streamwood co-op.
"We have a young team that is finding out how to work together," said Bartlett-Streamwood coach Carl Metzke, whose team won an invitational it hosted earlier this year.
In terms of pool performances, the 200 medley relay squad of freshmen Grant Gilchrist, Nathan Moran and seniors Mike Coleman and Brian Schneigert are working at a 1:52.25 pace.
The 200 relay team of senior Zach Konstanzer, sophomores Jake Hasenberg and Matt Ehrhardt and senior Brian Schneigert are working at a 1:49 pace.
The 400 relay team of Gilchrist, Moran, Hasenberg and Coleman is working at a 3:36.97 pace.
Moran's breaststroke time is around 1:09.
"That should come down," said Metzke.
Hasenberg's 200 free time is in the mid-1:50s, while his 500 is in the low 5-minute range.
"He has been working in practice to bring those times down," said Metzke.
Coleman also drew praise for his work.
"Mike Coleman has been really improving this year," said Metzke. "He has his 200 IM time down to 2:13, a great improvement since last season. His fly has been getting quicker and has been under a minute a few times this season. We hope to see a great finish for this senior."
Metzke said despite an up-and-down season, the team has made progress.
"With a young team, they are really finding their way and fitting into the right spots," said Metzke. "Our relays have gone through a lot of changes and our JV team has some really promising swimmers. Our boys come in day after day and put the time in the pool. They understand that the only way to become a better swimmer is to swim. They all are really looking forward to ending the season with a personal best for time. They understand that no matter who they are racing, you must first race the clock."