Boys swimming and diving: Barrington's O'Leary leads pack in back
Maine South coach Don Kura said he knew senior Daniel Young would have a stellar day at Friday's boys state swimming prelims in Evanston after watching him compete in the first event of the day, the 200-yard medley relay.
"He hit a 24.3 in the medley, " said Kura, "so he showed me there that he was really ready to go."
Young sure was, as he and his Hawks teammates qualified for today's finals in two relays and two individual events.
The Hawks placed 10th in the 200 free relay in the time of 1:25.99 with the quartet of Young, Jack Folan, Brendan Forrest and Alex Ostrowski.
Maine South also advanced in the 400 free relay (Young, Folan, Forrest and Billy Myer), and Forrest will move on individually in the 200 free (time of 1:41.56, good for the 11th spot), along with teammate Young (5th in the 200 IM, at 1:50.71.)
"It's going to be interesting to see what everyone has in the tank on Saturday," added Kura.
Ray Ure of Maine West sits in seventh position in the 1 -- meter dive after Friday's preliminaries and semifinals, while Barrington sophomore Griffin O'Leary excelled with a first-place finish in the 100 backstroke (time of 48.90).
O'Leary also took fifth place in the 100 fly, and the Broncos will also have a relay group in the mix Saturday after the 200 medley relay team (O'Leary, Daniel Langlois, Shawn Ujiiye and Jack Hoppe) put up a seventh-place finish at 1:33.66.
Hersey sophomore Noah Thomas swam in four events in the Athletes with Disabilities division finals and was outstanding in all four, finishing second in the 100-yard breaststroke, third in the 200 free, and seventh in the 50 free and the 100 free.
Stevenson finished fifth in the 200 medley relay (AJ Carollo, Jack Zhang, Jake Kim and Josh Song) with a mark of 1:32.93 and the Patriots also will boast a qualifier in the 100 fly in Song, who hit a time of 49.77 to place seventh.
"We've got a great relay group," said Stevenson coach Doug Lillydahl, "and the three seniors in that group (Carollo, Zhang and Kim) have done an excellent job of pushing themselves forward for four years.
"We've also got a star in Josh Song. He's been a difference-maker this year. Now (Saturday) we've got to get our nose in there and see what we can do, but there are some fantastic teams out here."
Tommy Doubleday of Maine South won't be competing in the final session, but the senior went out on a high note by posting his best ever finish in the difficult 500 freestyle, a 4:42.56.
"It was a good race," said Doubleday. "The 500 is certainly a tough race, and I did it right after the 200 IM so I was pretty drained. In the 500 you've kind of got to balance going fast but not overdoing it, especially in the beginning."
Doubleday added that he'll be "in the stands (Saturday) cheering on my friends," and also reflected on his past four years as a standout competitor for the Hawks.
"It was pretty cool being out here today," he said, "and especially seeing all the younger kids who are really fast. It's interesting to see how they compare to your class -- I got beat by a couple of freshmen today, and Rex Maurer (from Loyola), who is a freshman, took second in the 500. That's pretty crazy when you consider his age, guys my age couldn't even get close. But all in all it's been a fun four years for me, it's a little sad (to see it end) but today was a great way to wrap it up."