STATE SWIMMING: Rider relay, Deubler and Minster's Borgerding end seasons at state

CANTON — The St. Marys boys 200 yard medley relay team went where no Roughrider relay team has gone before.

St. Marys had four swimmers compete in two events at the OHSAA state swimming

championships on Thursday night at C.T. Branin Natatorium. While the quartet said they were disappointed that they didn’t qualify for Friday’s championship finals or consolation races, the four Roughriders with shaved heads were proud of what they accomplished this winter in the pool.

“Being the first relay team to get here was awesome,” senior Matt Hollman said.

“It’s the first time it’s ever happened,” said senior Jared Deubler, who swam in two events on Thursday. “It was great to work with these guys.”

The Rider 200 medley relay team of Deubler, Hollman, junior Dakota Braun and senior Noah Hartsock finished 21st in the preliminary with a 1:43.34 time. That was .74 seconds off their school-record pace established at the district meet and four spots away from advancing to Friday night’s consolation race.

Branin Natatorium, located just a few hundred feet away from the Pro Football Hall of Fame at Canton McKinley High School, can be an imposing place, seating 2,500 spectators and a deck packed to the brim with fellow competitors.

“It’s crazy, I’ve only been swimming for two years, so to make it here was an accomplishment,” senior Noah Hartsock said. “I couldn’t have done it without my teammates. It was a little overwhelming. It’s a lot of people. There’s not a lot of time to practice in the pool, but I think we did well.”

“Everybody is fast here,” Braun said. “Everyone’s time is fast. I’m just proud to be with this group of guys. With three of us swimming since we were really young, I’m glad to be with this group of guys at the state meet for our final race together.”

Deubler was the lone member of the relay team with state experience before this appearance in Canton. Deubler swam in both the boys 100 yard backstroke along with being part of the relay quartet on Thursday. He finished 20th in the 24-swimmer field in the 100 backstroke prelims with a 55.53-second time. That was nine-tenths of a second off his time at the district meet.

Deubler said he’s been disappointed by his individual finishes at state over the past three years and thinks he may need to switch up his routine in the week leading up to the state meet next year if he makes it back.

Hollman, who has been swimming from a young age, said club swimming prepares competitors for big stages like this one, but getting to state at the high school level means performing at one’s best on a certain day and time.

“Getting here is big,” Hollman said. “It’s the biggest meet I’ve ever been to. The most nerve-wracking.”

Miller 5th, Borgerding finishes 15th on Friday night

CANTON — A pair of Auglaize County swimmers finished turned in top 15 finishes at the OHSAA Division II girls swimming championship finals at C.T. Branin Natatorium on Friday evening.

Wapakoneta sophomore Josie Miller took fifth in the girls 50-yard freestyle with a 24.03-second time. That’s nearly three-tenths of a second better than her preliminary time that had her seeded fifth for Friday night’s title race.

Minster sophomore Nikki Borgerding  finished 15th in the girls 100 yard breaststroke. Borgerding, who advanced to the B Final race last night, finished seventh in Friday’s race with a 1:09.23 time to finish 15th overall in the event.

Celina’s Michaela Wenning finished 15th in the 50 yard freestyle with a 24.78-second time in the B Final race on Friday.

Shawnee’s Kendra Crew took second in the state in the 200 yard individual medley final and was also second in the girls 100 yard breaststroke. Shawnee’s Justin Crew was sixth in the boys 500 yard freestyle. The Shawnee girls 400 yard freestyle girls relay team finished seventh. The Indians’ Emily Murphy took eighth in the state in the 100 yard freestyle event. Shawnee’s 200 yard freestyle relay team of finished eighth.