Kamiak swimmers pose with the team championship trophy at the end of the 4A Northwest District swim and dive finals Saturday at Snohomish Aquatic Center in Snohomish. Kamiak won its 11th team title in 13 years. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Kamiak swimmers pose with the team championship trophy at the end of the 4A Northwest District swim and dive finals Saturday at Snohomish Aquatic Center in Snohomish. Kamiak won its 11th team title in 13 years. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Kamiak wins 4A district swim title as records fall

Seven total meet records are set as the Knights cruise to their 11th outright district crown in 13 years.

SNOHOMISH — Wesco 4A’s talented array of swimmers made record-breaking performances the norm Saturday at Snohomish Aquatic Center.

During an ultra-fast edition of the Class 4A Northwest District boys swim and dive finals, meet records fell in seven of the 12 events.

It was such a speedy field that on two occasions a swimmer or relay team broke a district-meet record, yet didn’t win the race.

“Some of the swims that happened today were so impressive,” Kamiak coach Chris Erickson said.

Yet for all of the new records, a familiar powerhouse remained atop the district throne.

Kamiak rolled to its 11th outright district title in 13 years, claiming its usual spot atop the team standings with 513 points. The Knights finished well ahead of second-place Jackson, which totaled 388 points.

Kamiak won three events — two relays and one individual race — and set district-meet records in all three. But team depth was just as important for the Knights, who totaled 20 top-eight finishes in the eight individual swimming events.

“I was really impressed with that,” Erickson said of his depth.

Kamiak junior Vlad Gilszmer, the defending 4A state champion in the 500-yard freestyle, cruised to his third consecutive district title in the event. He posted an All-American consideration time of 4 minutes, 32.53 seconds, which broke an 11-year meet record by more than 1.5 seconds.

The Knights also sped to a pair of relay victories, setting meet records by nearly 2.5 seconds in both races.

The Kamiak team of Max Fang, Brian Park, Slava Gilszmer and Vlad Gilszmer cruised to the 200 freestyle relay title in 1:25.97, falling just 0.11 seconds shy of an All-American consideration time. Max Fang, Ryan Fang and the Gilszmer twins also won the 400 freestyle relay in 3:10.49.

“We were a little flat on Thursday (in the preliminaries), but of course you always want to swim better at finals,” Erickson said. “And most of our guys swam better today — some a lot better — than we did on Thursday. So that’s really good.”

Glacier Peak senior Matthew King showed why he’s one of the nation’s top recruits, sprinting to district titles and automatic All-American times in both the 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle. In both events, he broke his own meet records that he set in 2018.

The University of Alabama signee won the 50 freestyle in a blistering 20.02 seconds, which was 0.79 seconds faster than his 2018 district record. He won the 100 freestyle in 44.06 seconds, which was more than two seconds faster than his 2018 time.

King is the top-ranked senior recruit in the state and the No. 44 senior recruit in the nation, according to CollegeSwimming.com.

After winning 4A state titles in the 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle as a sophomore, King took last season off from high school swimming. He rejoined the Grizzlies earlier this season and accumulated enough practices to participate in the team’s final regular-season meet, during which he earned his district-qualifying times, according to Glacier Peak coach Ron Belleza.

“He took last season off to focus more on club swimming, because he had a bunch of recruitment trips to concentrate on,” Belleza said. “… So I told him, ‘You know, we’re going to be here next year, and if you can come through, we’ll be here for (you).’ And he did.”

Jackson sophomore Jensen Elsemore beat a Kamiak trio of reigning top-six state medalists to claim the 200 freestyle in a meet-record 1:40.43.

Elsemore trailed Vlad Gilszmer — who earned a fourth-place state medal in the event last season — by about a body length with 50 meters to go. But Elsemore surged past Gilszmer on the closing stretch and finished 0.21 seconds ahead of the Kamiak standout. Elsemore also finished ahead of reigning Kamiak state medalists Max Fang and Slava Gilszmer.

“He’s just really come into his own over the course of the last month, month-and-a-half,” Jackson coach Drew Whorley said. “It’s a whole lot of fun watching someone start to realize what they’re capable of doing.”

The Jackson team of Braden Thompson, Justin Limberg, Alex Georgiev and Elsemore won the 200 medley relay in 1:36.63. Georgiev also claimed the 100 backstroke title.

Lake Stevens sophomore Jaden Cardona took first place in the diving competition with 457.7 points, finishing ahead of Monroe’s Benson Boone and Lake Stevens’ Tyler Cochran. All three divers were state finalists last season.

Lake Stevens senior Alejandro Flores, an Auburn University signee, touched the wall just behind Mount Vernon swimmers during a pair of second-place finishes. Flores finished just 0.13 seconds behind Mount Vernon freshman Wyatt Carlton in the 100 butterfly and just 0.24 seconds behind Mount Vernon sophomore Luke Pusateri in the 100 breaststroke.

Limberg bettered the previous meet record in the 200 individual medley, but finished in second place behind Pusateri.

Swimmers and divers now turn their attention to next week’s state championships, which take place Friday and Saturday at King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way.

“It’s going to be wild,” Erickson said. “Wesco, I think, will be impressively represented. … Wesco is looking really good.”

Talk to us

More in Sports

Kenai Sinaphet takes the hand off from head coach, Dalton Schwetz, during practice Wednesday afternoon at Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Marysville, Washington on August 17, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
‘Fresh start’ for Marysville Pilchuck under new coach Schwetz

The Tomahawks begin practice without longtime coach Brandon Carson, who stepped down following last year’s playoff run.

Stanwood's Ryder Bumgarner rushes with yardage with Arlington's Trenton Lamie, left, closing in the third quarter Friday night at Stanwood High School on September 24, 2021.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Prep football: 5 storylines to watch this season

A look at some intriguing questions as local high school football practices get underway.

The Central Welding Supply 125, which serves as the season finale at Evergreen Speedway, will attempt to run on Saturday, after being bumped postponed last weekend due to weather.
Community roundup: ARCA West comes to Evergreen Speedway

Plus, a host of local collegians earn preseason honors, Jake Luton gets released by the Jaguars and more.

AquaSox's manager, Louis Boyd, Funko Field at Everett Memorial Stadium in Everett on July 28, 2019. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
AquaSox fall to Canadians in slugfest

Everett loses 12-8 as the two teams combine for 30 hits.

Seattle Mariners' Cal Raleigh celebrates with teammates after hitting a solo home run against the Los Angeles Angels during the fifth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2022. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)
Raleigh homers twice, Mariners top Angels to complete sweep

Seattle hits four total home runs in an 11-7 win over Los Angeles.

Seattle Storm head coach Noelle Quinn directs her team during the first half of a WNBA basketball game against the Las Vegas Aces, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2022, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Sam Morris)
Can 2nd-year coach Quinn lead Storm to 5th WNBA title?

Seattle’s postseason gets underway at home against Washington on Thursday night.

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Drew Lock (2) walks the sideline during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Barry Reeger)
Carroll laments lost chance for Lock, Seahawks due to COVID

The QB will miss an opportunity to start Thursday’s preseason game after getting the virus for the second time.

People explore Everett Memorial Stadium’s new turf and track during an open house event Monday, Aug. 15, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Everett Memorial Stadium reopens with new-look field, track

The facility, which originally opened in 1947, underwent renovations this summer.

Angel of the Winds Arena stands ready and waiting Friday afternoon for Kraken fans to arrive for the preseason game against the Edmondton Oilers. (Jake Goldstein-Street / The Herald)
Kraken’s new AHL affiliate set to play game in Everett

The Coachella Valley Firebirds take the ice at Angel of the Winds Arena on Oct. 28.

Most Read