Boys swimming and diving: Scouting the Fox Valley

By Darryl Mellema
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 12/8/2017 1:22 AM
  • St. Charles North's William Myhre swims toward a second-place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke during the boys swimming state finals last season. Myhre returns to the pool for the North Stars this season.

      St. Charles North's William Myhre swims toward a second-place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke during the boys swimming state finals last season. Myhre returns to the pool for the North Stars this season. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • St. Charles East's Austin Cabel competes in the 500-yard freestyle at the boys swimming state meet last season. Cabel returns for the Saints this season.

      St. Charles East's Austin Cabel competes in the 500-yard freestyle at the boys swimming state meet last season. Cabel returns for the Saints this season. John Starks | Staff Photographer

Bartlett-Streamwood co-op

Coach: Jeremy Meserole

Key losses to graduation: Luke Woerner.

Top returning swimmers and divers: Tommy Cummins, Sr.; Alex Tannhauser, Jr.; Truman Jacobson, So.; Kyle Grossman, So.

Key newcomers: Alex DeBuhr, Fr.; Chris Hojsan, Fr.

Outlook: While this year's Bartlett-Streamwood squad is building toward the future, the team's lone senior, Tommy Cummins, is a talented all-arounder. He can swim both sprint freestyle and long-distance events, swims the 200-yard IM and also the backstroke. The team is long on youth, especially in its freshman class. Look for freshmen Alex DeBuhr and Chris Hojsan to contribute immediately. Hojsan, in particular, has grown up swimming. A pair of sophomores forms part of a youthful core for the squad. Truman Jacobson is a sprint freestyler who can also swim the backstroke while Kyle Grossman is a sprint freestyler who will be key for the team's relays. Alex Tannhauser is the team's best butterfly swimmer and also swims the backstroke. Given the competition in the area, qualifying anyone for the state meet will be difficult, but the experience the team gains will help set it up for future successful seasons.

District 155 co-op

Coach: Scott Lattyak

Key losses to graduation: Ethan Hare.

Top returning swimmers and divers: Kolin Fadden, Jr.; Cameron Castro, Jr.; Omid Babakhani, Sr.; Connor Dolezal, Sr.; Cole Seeger, So.; Peyton Richardson, So.; Noah Siegmeier, So.

Key newcomers: Hunter Jackson, Fr.; Bram Byer, Fr.

Outlook: "Our emphasis is to be committed and to support one each other 100 percent," coach Scott Lattyak said of his co-op team, comprised of swimmers from Cary-Grove, Crystal Lake South and Prairie Ridge. "Last season the team focused internally on what they needed to do as individuals instead of it being a joint effort." The team's only individual event qualifier for the state meet last year, Ethan Hare, graduated. However, three-fourths of the state qualifying 200 freestyle relay -- Kolin Fadden, Cameron Castro and Omid Babakhani return as core members of this year's team. Of the freshmen on the team, Hunter Jackson has shown potential in the 100 breaststroke and Bram Byer in the 500 freestyle. "This year, everything is about strengthening the trust and bond. The final times we achieve are the reward," Lattyak said.

Elgin-Larkin co-op

Coach: John Means

Key losses to graduation: Jakob Woerner; Durand Thorne.

Top returning swimmers and divers: Athur Thorne, Jr.; Gabriel Gulumian Jr.

Key newcomers: Collin Klein, Fr.; Kolby Xayachanla, Fr.

Outlook: As coach John Means says, the key for a youthful Elgin-Larkin team this year is to "improve on personal times and improve our performance in the Upstate Eight Conference." With talented teams such as St. Charles North and St. Charles East in the conference, Elgin-Larkin is always in a difficult position in trying to move up the conference standings, but the team has always improved as the season progresses.


Coach: Brenda Czarnecki

Key losses to graduation: None.

Top returning swimmers and divers: Mark Vandy, So.; Zachary Michael, Sr.; Maxwell Hagberg, So., Evan Tocmo, So.

Key newcomers: Kacper Cebula, Fr.; Matthew Kim, Fr.

Outlook: Last year's Huntley squad was very youthful, and this year's team is every bit as young, though the team did not lose anyone to graduation last spring. Sophomore Mark Vandy was the Red Raiders' best performer in the St. Charles North sectional, placing seventh in the 500-yard freestyle. Hagberg combined with two more current sophomores, Maxwell Hagberg and Evan Tocmo as well as senior Zachary Michael to finish ninth in the 200 medley relay. "We have a young team and they all worked hard in the offseason," Huntley coach Brenda Czarnecki said. "I am looking forward to a competitive season with a large number of them recording personal best times."

District 300 co-op

Coach: Rick Andresen

Top returning swimmers and divers: Reid Coyle, Sr.; Elijah Stuart, Sr.; Eric Boysen, Jr.; Harold Ogaban, Jr.; Jacob Carignan, Jr.; Caden Waddell, So.; Alec Orndahl, So.

Key newcomers: Alex Le, Jr.; Vince Chiappetta, Fr.; Nate Herrera, Fr.

Outlook: With practically its entire varsity team back and an influx of new swimmers to the program, Rick Andresen has a record turnout this year for the co-op that includes Jacobs, Hampshire and Dundee-Crown. Of seniors Reid Coyle and Elijah Stuart, Andresen says, "both of these young men show good leadership in and out of the water." Junior Alex Le has returned to swimming and the team has newcomers Vince Chiappetta and Nate Herrera to augment the returning athletes. "We have good depth and are able to be solid in all events," Andresen said. Andresen added that he would like to see his team challenge the District 155 co-op for the Fox Valley Conference title.


Coach: Bill Schalz

Key losses to graduation: Nathan Kuszynski

Top returning swimmers and divers: Will Kamps, Sr.; Gary Rockwood, Sr.; Sam Wehrli, Sr.; Matt Felber, Sr.; Nolan Fergus, Jr.; Henry Bliss, Jr.; Zack Eckstrom, So.; Josh Harris, So.

Key newcomers: Ryan Conner, Fr.; Ty Spillane, Fr.

Outlook: After slow, steady building in recent years, Marmion's boys swim team has experience, athletes who have scored at the state meet and depth. There are also talented freshmen in the program as well. Add it up, and the Cadets could be poised for a Top 5 finish, their best in recent years. Will Kamps as the team's lone qualifier when he was a freshman, but as a senior, he has a number of fellow qualifiers, and in Nolan Fergus, Gary Rockwood and Sam Wehrli, he has teammates who scored last year in the state meet in the 200-yard freestyle relay. Kamps moved into elite territory in that meet at New Trier as well, finishing sixth in the 500 freestyle.

South Elgin

Coach: Bret Anderson

Key losses to graduation: Adam Elmkinssi, Owen Vajarsky.

Top returning swimmers and divers: Justin York, Sr.; Alan Romanowski, Sr.; Kyle Cole, Sr.; Sam Vassallo, Sr.; Aidan McClow, Jr.; Arturo Villegas, Jr.; Andrew Estep, So.

Key newcomers: Finn Engel, Sr.; Alexander Schlueter, So.

Outlook: South Elgin had a state qualifier last year in diver Justin York, and he returns for his senior year with the Storm. Alan Romanowski had the best individual results -- in the 100-yard freestyle and the 100 breaststroke -- in the St. Charles North sectional, and he returns for his senior season. Distance swimmer Sam Vassalo is another solid performer back for his senior year. "We have a hard working and dedicated bunch and we're excited for the upcoming season. We return most of our sectional lineup from last season while adding a few newcomers who will contribute right away," South Elgin coach Bret Anderson said.

St. Charles East

Coach: Adam Musial

Key losses to graduation: Nick Boryk, John Cranfill, Kyle Dunlap.

Top returning swimmers and divers: Harrison Hollman, Sr.; Kyle Lewarchick, Sr.; Mitchell Milosch, Sr.; Matt Ortlund, Sr.; Austin Cabel, Jr.; Matt Nagler, Jr.; Garrett Prybell, Jr.; Joey Scimeca, So.; Sean Yetter, So.

Key newcomers: Calvin Windle, Fr.

Outlook: Adam Musial took the reins of the St. Charles East boys swim team after Joe Cabel retired following last season. Musial, most recently the assistant coach at powerhouse Hinsdale Central, has a team that graduated some talented swimmers after finishing fifth in the state but has an abundance of talented athletes returning. Last year, the Saints had a record boys swimming turnout, and that surge will benefit the team for years to come. "We have a number of returning state qualifiers who are excited and ready to start the journey to the state meet," Musial said. For team leaders, the Saints can call upon seniors Kyle Lewarchick, Matt Ortlund and juniors Matt Nagler, Austin Cabel, Austin Prybell and sophomore Sam Yetter -- all state qualifiers in 2017. "The guys are a very talented group of swimmers and divers who have put in countless hours in the offseason in preparation to improve on their fifth-place finish from last year," Musial said.

St. Charles North

Coach: Rob Rooney

Key Loss to graduation: Nick Wolff and Caymus Cairns

Top returners: William Myhre, Jr.; Siba Filipovic, So.; Nate Baxter, So.; Brad Whitehurst, Jr.; Ricky Williams, So.; Ben Watanapongse, So.

Key newcomers: Jack Brucato, Fr.

Outlook: Last year's St. Charles North team built and built through the regular season, then soared in the postseason and finished eighth at the state meet. While two key components of that team -- state qualifiers Nick Wolff and Caymus Cairns -- graduated, the core of that strong team returns. Add to that the team's pedigree -- five Top 10 finishes in the last seven years -- and you can see that when the North Stars say they think they're a good team, they're not messing around. "We have the nucleus and talent to make a run at a Top 5 finish at the state meet," St. Charles North coach Rob Rooney said. For that to happen, the team's sophomore class will be the driving force. That was the group that matured through 2016-17 as freshmen and struggled for some of the regular season only to shine during taper season. "We need to find speed in our relays and look to score all three in finals at the state meet," Rooney said. At the top end of the lineup, the North Stars have Will Myhre, a junior who had excelled in two seasons in the program. He has twice finished second in the 100-yard breaststroke and last season was third in the 200 IM as well. "We will need his leadership to develop to help with the growth of the team," Rooney said of Myhre.

West Aurora

Coach: Chris Ranallo

Key losses to graduation: Elliot Barbel.

Top returning swimmers and divers: Jonathan Argumedo, Jr.; Logan Conway, Jr.; Kevin Cortez, Sr.; Derek Dodson, Jr.; Caden LaFond, Sr.; Cael McLaren, So.; Joe Oeschenschlager, Sr.; Luke Reimers, Sr.; Alec Wahl, Jr.; Owen Zant, Jr.

Key newcomers: Vincent Smith, Fr.

Outlook: Year after year, West Aurora's boys swim team gets just a little bit better, and this year's no exception. A year after a solid fifth-place finish in the Upstate Eight at the varsity level and an equally-solid fifth-place finish at the JV level, the team is ready to see what it can achieve this season. "We are looking forward to another great season for the boys team," West Aurora coach Chris Ranallo said. "We have a big senior class this year, but are extremely strong with our juniors." Junior Owen Zant qualified for the state meet last year, and sophomore Cael McLaren had a strong meet as well. Zant, McLaren and Joe Oeschenschlager return from a 400-yard freestyle relay that finished third in the Upstate Eight Conference. "The guys have been working extremely hard and hopefully we can get a few of them qualified for the state meet," Ranallo said.

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