Gig Harbor senior Evan Indahl had been putting in the hard work in the pool all season long and had yet to see it really show in his times.
It was starting to get to him.
But things changed for the better on Friday night at the Class 4A boys state swimming and diving championships at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, as Indahl clocked the fastest times in both the 200-meter IM and the 500 freestyle preliminaries.
“When you feel like you’re not improving much the first little bit, it’s mentally taxing,” Indahl said. “It felt nice to be fully tapered and try as hard as I’ve been trying all season and then get results.”
Right out of the gate, Indahl finished the 200 IM in a time of 1 minute, 53:00 (automatic All-American), edging Stadium’s Logan Rysemus (1:55.00) and breaking his own school record by a little more than three seconds.
“I’ve been sitting at that 1:56 mark for a while, and dropping down to that 1:53 area — to say it’s surprising, it’s an understatement,” he said. “It definitely set the tone for the day.”
Indahl came back later in the evening to clock a 4:41.55 in the 500 free, setting up a showdown today with Kamiak’s John Stupey, who held the best seed time (4:40.70) entering the tournament. Stupey swam a 4:43.35 on Friday to qualify for the final.
Kentridge junior Chase Bublitz — who opted not to defend his state titles in the 50 free and 100 butterfly this year — clocked the fastest time in his state debut in the 100 free (45.63, automatic All-American) and finished second in the 200 free (1:42.43). Cascade’s Asahel Jenkins swam the top time in the 200 free, a 1:41.70.
“I was really happy” with the 200 time, Bublitz said. “I feel like I have a lot left in the tank. I’d like to be in lane 4, but (in) lane 5 I breathe to my left, so when I’m coming back I’ll be able to see (Jenkins), who is in lane 4. It will play to my advantage.”
As expected, Eastlake High junior Edward Kim, who qualified for last summer’s U.S. Olympic trials, put on a show. Kim finished with the fastest time in the 50 free (20.41, automatic All-American) and the 100 butterfly (48.82, automatic All-American). Despite clocking the second-fastest time to Kim in the 50 free, Stadium senior Andrew Lackman’s time of 21.38 set a school record.
“You can’t ask a kid to do much better,” Stadium coach Dave Baughman said of Lackman’s time. “Drew has got people to swim against who are doing phenomenally well, and he’s going to do everything he can to stay with them (today).”
Lackman also qualified in the 100 free (47.42), swimming the third-fastest time.
Other top area qualifiers included Curtis junior Brian Woodbury, who swam the fastest time in the 100 backstroke (49.82, automatic All-American) and also qualified for the 100 butterfly final (50.98). He’ll be joined in the final by Stadium’s Rysemus (51.50).
Stadium’s 200 medley (1:37.61) and 400 free relay (3:13.36) teams also notched the top times, while Kentridge (1:30.46) took the top spot for the 200 free relay.
In Class 2A action, the Steilacoom Sentinels continued their assault on the school’s record books. Ben Scott qualified with the top time in the 100 back (53.15) and the second-fastest time in the 100 free (48.47), with both swims breaking school records.
“I expect him to go faster (today),” Steilacoom coach Kathy Casey said of Scott.
The 200 medley relay team (1:43.84, third) also broke a school record, and Ryan Shipes (158.50) sits in third place in diving.
“They have completely rewritten the school record books,” Casey said of her team. “They’ve been amazing.”
In Class 3A, Peninsula’s Caleb Riggs (1:57.63) qualified for the 100 breast final and Auburn Mountainview’s Cameron Lindsay will swim in two finals (100 back, 200 IM).