Greendale/Greenfield boys swimming team will be represented in every event at state
Panther-Hawks won seven of 12 events en route to winning sectional
A busy day in Madison awaits the Greendale/Greenfield boys swimming and diving team.
For the first time ever, the Panther-Hawks qualified someone in every one of the 12 events for the WIAA Division 1 State Meet at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Natatorium.
The diving competition begins at 10 a.m. Saturday, with the swimming races starting at 3 p.m.
"We were hoping to be well-represented at the state meet," head coach Dale Schrank said. "I really did not think we would have swimmers or divers in every single event. It should be a fun weekend."
Besides sending entrants in each individual swimming event and all three relays, the Panther-Hawks also qualified a diver for state for the first time in more than 20 seasons when senior Liam Duffy advanced.
Locals win team title
Greendale/Greenfield cruised to the team championship of its own home sectional on Saturday, scoring 336½ points to beat Racine Case's 305 points.
The Panther-Hawks also won seven of the 12 events as sophomore Rick Perez and junior Ross Rybakowicz both claimed a pair of individual championships.
Perez won the 200-yard individual medley with 1 minute, 56.44 seconds and the 100 backstroke at 51.66 seconds, both pool records.
The 100 backstroke time was also a school record for Perez.
Rybakowicz captured the 100 butterfly in a season-best 52.91 seconds and the 100 breaststroke with a school-record 59.73.
The Panther-Hawks also won all three relay races, with junior Adam Fleischhacker swimming the anchor leg each time.
Perez and Rybakowicz teamed with senior Andrew Staszak and Fleischhacker to claim the 200 medley relay in a pool-record 1:37.55, while senior Niko Mendelin, Rybakowicz, junior Shawn Lucchesi and Fleischhacker took the 200 freestyle relay with 1:31.14 and Perez, Staszak, Lucchesi and Fleischhacker captured the 400 freestyle at 3:17.59.
Lucchesi also qualified in the 200 freestyle, taking second in 1:48.55 at the sectional, and the 100 freestyle, again second with 49.2.
Staszak advanced to state in the 500 freestyle after finishing second with 4:57.21 and Fleischhacker reached state in the 50 freestyle with second place in 22.38 at the sectional.
"I am convinced that if we can get Andrew (Staszak) to swim 'his own race,' and not be quite so aggressive on the first half of the swim," Schrank said, "he could easily walk away from state with another school record for the season."
Diver Duffy qualifies
The final qualifier is Duffy, who placed fourth in diving at the sectional with 359.15 points.
"Liam was a little too apprehensive for the entire meet," diving coach Cheryl Weber said. "Now that the pressure to qualify is off, I think Liam will be much more relaxed and will be in a much better position to throw a number of his dives with a lot more confidence."
Other top-eight finishers at the sectional were Staszak taking third in the 100 butterfly (55.22) and senior Jeff Jacobs sixth in the 100 breaststroke (1:06.89).
"Every swimmer who was tapered for this meet walked away with lifetime-best times," Schrank said. "What is really encouraging is that even the swimmers who were not fully rested for this meet still had lifetime-best times."
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