Ben Wiegand Blasts 50 Free Record; Middleton Earns First-Ever Wisconsin Boys DI State Title

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Photo Courtesy: Middleton High School Twitter (@MCPMHS)

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The 2020 Wisconsin Boys DI State Swimming and Diving Championships took place on Saturday, Feb. 22 at the University of Wisconsin Natatorium in Madison, Wis.

Sun Prairie’s Ben Wiegand highlighted the meet by setting a new Wisconsin state record in the 50 free with a time of 20.16. Middleton showed their impressive depth to clinch their first-ever state title in program history with a final score of 228 ahead of Waukesha South/Catholic Memorial (222) and Sun Prairie (197).

Click HERE for full results and team scores.

Top 5 Team Scores:

1. Middleton – 228
2. Waukesha South/Catholic Memorial – 222
3. Sun Prairie – 197
4. Madison West – 180
5. Eau Claire Memorial/North – 167

The meet began as Greenfield Co-op’s Emilio Perez (22.60), Vincent Patti (27.04), Jackson Lustig (23.14), and Leo Gandaria (20.75) won the opening 4×50 medley relay with a time of 1:33.53. Eau Claire Memorial/North was a very close second in 1:33.60 while Sun Prairie was right behind in 1:33.86 for third.

Waukesha South/Catholic Memorial’s Caleb Blischke, who finished third in the 200 free in 2019, found himself with the gold medal this year after stopping the clock in 1:41.30 for the win. Greenfield Co-op teammates Lustig (1:42.19) and Gandaria (1:42.82) finished second and third, respectively.

Green Bay Southwest Co-op’s Kaiser Neverman, who has committed to Minnesota, dominated the 200 IM after clocking in at 1:47.79 to win by four seconds as the only swimmer under the 1:50-barrier. Stevens Point’s Drew Harris took second in 1:51.26 and Middleton’s Nathan Kim wound up third in 1:52.52.

Future Wisconsin Badger Wiegand splashed-and-dashed his way to the state title in the 50 free, finishing in a quick 20.16 to break Matt Friede’s state record of 20.44 set back in 2010. Madison’s Isaac Casey-Hrenak was also under the old record but settled for second in 20.43 while defending champion William Hayon of Sheboygan North was third in 20.69.

Shortly after winning the 200 IM in dominant fashion, Neverman was back in the water and flew to the top of the podium in the 100 fly with a final time of 47.74. Perez was right behind him in 47.97 while Verona Area/Mount Herob’s Oscar Best swam to third in a time of 50.25.

After finishing second on the one-meter diving board last year, Marquette’s Mike Konle finished second with 538.90 points this season to win. Madison Memorial’s Drew Bennett took second with a total score of 524.65 and West Bend East/West’s Jan Lanser was third with a score of 470.05.

Casey-Hrenak, who took third in the 100 free in 2019, redeemed himself this season after sprinting to the wall in a swift 44.97 for the gold medal in that event. Waukesha South/Catholic Memorial earned silver in 45.45 and bronze went to Hayon with a final time of 46.35.

Last year’s 500 free runner-up Harris was victorious this season in the 500 free, leading the race from start to finish to post a final time of 4:31.85 for the win. Georgia Tech commit Blischke secured the second-place finish with a time of 4:34.46 while 4:34.53 was fast enough for Lustig to take third.

The quartet of Cade Roggenbauer (21.48), JP Anhalt (21.09), Ethan Braatz (21.54), and Wiegand (19.11) joined forces to give Sun Prairie a win in the 4×50 free relay with a combined time of 1:23.22 – only one-tenth off the state record. Madison West (1:24.91) and Middleton (1:25.59) completed the top three.

Milwaukee King Co-op’s Ziyad Saleem powered home to a win in the 100 back, leading the charge in 49.30. Carlson again finished second while also sneaking under the 50-second marker in 49.98 and Arrowhead’s Adam Braunschweig clocked in at 50.85 for third.

Madison West’s Charlie Feller got his hands to the wall the fastest in the 100 breast with a final time of 56.10 to secure the state title. Wiegand (56.79) and Muskego’s Nick Schuster (57.00) completed the podium finishers by placing second and third, respectively.

Waukesha South/Catholic Memorial’s Carlson (45.35), Nolan Scanlan (46.01), Joe Esterle (48.16), and Blischke (45.62) concluded the meet by winning the 4×100 free relay in a combined time of 3:05.14. They were a full second ahead of the rest of the field as Middleton took second in 3:06.11 and Eau Claire Memorial/North took third in 3:06.93

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