Waukee and Iowa City West lead Iowa swim showcase at 2022 Boys State Meet

Teammates rush to celebrate with anchor swimmer Kirk Brotherton after the Trojans won the 200-yard medley relay at the 2022 Iowa High School Athletic Association State Swim meet at the Recreation Center and campus wellness center at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa, on Saturday, February 12, 2022. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

IOWA CITY — Iowa City West’s Kirk Brotherton put it in proper perspective.

“I love (the state of) Iowa swimming,” he said. “This is the day we’ve all been waiting for and we all wanted to swim our best and we all did.”

Saturday’s IHSAA State Meet was a celebration of all the boy swimming talent in the state. Swimmers from multiple teams lost their times by significant margins, leading to some fantastic races in the pool at the University of Iowa Campus Recreation and Wellness Center.

West got a great anchor leg from Brotherton to set a state record in the competition’s opening event, the 200-yard medley relay. This victory, in 1:30.87, propelled the Trojans to a second place. Waukee won five of 11 events, escaping with the tag team title. Waukee finished with 293.5 points. West was second at 232 while West Des Moines Valley was third at 208.5.

Linn-Mar, paced by second-place seniors Cooper Callahan in the 500 freestyle and Aiden Carstensen in the 100 backstroke, finished fourth with 194 points, the best result in school history.

Brotherton led Troy’s charge throughout the encounter. He added second places in the 50 and 100 freestyles and was on the 200 freestyle relay which was just edged out by Bettendorf (1:23.09 to 1:23.22) for top honors.

“We work hard, we swim hard, then we rest hard,” West coach Byron Butler said of his team. “They’re very coachable and they’re just awesome kids.”

Butler’s influence on West’s success cannot be underestimated, according to Brotherton.

“Byron does so much for us as swimmers,” he said. “He tells us what to do and we really believe in him.”

The Trojans won the team title in 2020 and finished third last year. They always seem to have a swimmer or two coming in big in the state. Senior Max Gerke provided crucial points with his performances in the 500m freestyle and 400m freestyle relay.

“Things like this make me emotional,” Butler said. “We have a great group of seniors in this team and they were exceptional today. Max had some great swims.

The race of competition turned out to be the 100 m freestyle, won by AJ Abram of Waukee, where the top four earned automatic All-America honors and the next two earned All-America consolation.

“It’s just crazy to think how good that race was,” Linn-Mar coach Tom Belin said. “It shows how many good swimmers there are in this state.”

Some of these swimmers belong to the Lions of Belin. Callahan and Carstensen hoped to win gold medals, but fell short despite their best numbers of the year.

“I’m so proud of them and all of our swimmers today,” said Belin. “They are great competitors and they want to win, but they went out and did what they could do. They lowered their times and raced really well.

“They’re disappointed, that’s for sure,” the Linn-Mar coach continued. “Once they have a chance to look back and see how well they performed, they will have a better perspective of what they did here today.”

Waukee’s Abram, who won the 100 and 200 freestyle and competed in the team’s winning 400m relay, shared swimmer of the competition honors with Kohen Rankin of Sioux City Metro, a two-time winner of the 50 freestyle and 100m breaststroke.

2022 Iowa High School Swim Results

At UI CRWC Pool, Iowa City

Final Team Score: 1. Waukee 293.5, 2. IC West 232, 3. WDM Valley 208.5, 4. Linn-Mar 194, 5. Bettendorf 190, 6. Pleasant Valley 134, 7. Ankeny 197 ,5, 8. Ames 117.5, 9 SC Metro 103, 10. WDM Dowling 100, 11. Dub. Hempstead 89, 12. Johnston 82, 13. Dav. Central 71, 14. IC High 64, 15 Indianola 27, 16. Spencer 23, 17. CR Kennedy 21, 18. Marshalltown 19.5, 19. Cedar Falls, 20. CR Washington 14, 21. Vinton-Shellsburg 12, 22. Williamsburg 9, 23, Burlington 8, 24. Decorah 5, 25 (tie) Grinnell, CB Lewis Central, Dub. Senior 4, 28 years old. CR Jefferson 2.

(Top 3 plus Gazette zone swimmers)

200-yard medley relay: 1. Iowa City West (Boyd Skelley, Jordan Christensen, Holden Carter, Kirk Brotherton) 1:30.87; 2. Waukee (Asher Havenhill, Levi Manning, Andrew Reiter, Cooper Rogers) 1:32.12; 3. Linn-Mar (Aiden Carstensen, Blake Behrens, Ian Steffen, Ryan Horsey) 1:33.34; 10. Iowa City High (John Weigel, Kento Yahashiri, Joe Polyak, Will Larson) 1:36.81; 15. CR Washington (Seth Williams, Brian Foerster, Ian McGrath, Ryan McCaffrey) 1:40.69; 16. Vinton-Shellsburg (Bradyn Schlief, Carter Kirtz, Ian Allsup, Logan Zearley) 1:41.51; 17. CR Kennedy (Mason Turner, AJ Miller, Spencer Kramer, Jesse Gunter) 1:41.71; 18. Williamsburg (Braxton McGrath, Jack Colvin, Jaxon Strank, Hunter Kauffman) 1:42.13; 22. CR Jefferson (Carter Prull, Camden Meiners, Tate Kuennen, Parker Gammill) 1:43.24.

200m free: 1. AJ Abram (Waukee) 1: 36.13, 2. Alex Stone (Bett) 1: 37.02, 3. Cooper Callahan (LM) 1: 38.41, 9. Max Gerke (ICW) 1:42.82; 17. Damon Conzemius (ICW) 1:46.36, 21. Drew Chamberlain (dec) 1:46.98, 22. Luke Kelley (LM) 1:47.12, 23. Lukas Swanson (ICW) 1:47.43, 28. Connor Schaffel ( LM) 1:48.12, 29. Anthony Lee (CRJ) 1:48.26.

200 IM: 1. Andrew Reiter (Waukee) 1:48.57, 2. Tony Hancock (WDM Dowling) 1:52.43, 3. Joshua Chen (Ames) 1:53.01; 4. Joe Polyak (ICH) 1:53.12, 7. Jordan Christensen (ICW) 1:55.28, 11. Mason Turner (CRK) 1:55.93, 19. Blake Behrens (LM) 1:59.66, 21. Nikolas Sung (ICW) ) 2:00.23, 24. Carter Kirtz (VS) 2:01.08, 30 Ian Lucas (CRW) 2:02.79

50 free: 1. Kohen Rankin (SC Metro) 20.22, 2. Kirk Brotherton (ICW) 20.56, 3. Aiden Carstensen (LM) 20.87, 13. Grady Wheeler (CRW) 22.06, 18. Spencer Kramer (CRK) 21.90. 19. Ryan Horsey (LM) 21.91, 20. Christian Janis (ICW) 21.99, 21. Will Larson (ICH) 22.00, 24. Barrett Coffey (ICW) 22.22, 26. Ian Allsup (VS) 22.29, 28. Ryan McCaffrey ( CRW) 22.59

100 butterfly: 1. Lance Swanepoel (Ankeny) 48.22, 2. Carter Anderson (Bett) 48.88, 3. Kyle Hopewell (D.Central) 48.99, 5. Holden Carter (ICW) 50.12, 9 Braxton McGrath (Wburg) 51.42, 16. Andy Luo (ICW) 53.51, 18. Jaxon Strank (Wburg) 53.12, 26. Seth Williams (CRW) 54.72, 27. Ian McGrath (CRW) 54.85, 32. Tate Kuennen (CRJ) 56.56.

Para 100 free: 1. Isaiah Picard (Indianola) 1:46.87

100 free: 1. AJ Abram (Waukee) 44.60, 2. Kirk Brotherton (ICW) 44.69, 3. George Holesing (Dub Sen) 44.87, 6. Ian Steffen (LM) 45.39, 7. Boyd Skelley (ICW) 47.32, 10 John Weigel (ICH) 47.44, 18. Ian Lucas (CRW) 48.60, 22. Grady Wheeler (CRW) 48.96, 30. Ryan Horsey (LM) 49.78.

500m free: 1. Jacob Pins (WDM Valley) 4: 26.30, 2. Cooper Callahan (LM) 4: 31.87, 3. James Coffey (Wauk) 4: 36.78, 4. Mason Turner (CRK ) 4:37.21, 6. Max Gerke (ICW) 4:40.11, 8. Luke Kelley (LM) 4:49.55, 12. Connor Schaffel (LM) 4:48.25, 13. Lukas Swanson (ICW) 4:48.38 , 27. Anthony Lee (CRJ) 4:58.36

200m freestyle relay: 1. Bettendorf (Max Wetteland, Carter Anderson, Noah Mitvalsky, Alex Stone) 1:23.09, 2. Iowa City West (Kirk Brotherton, Damon Conzemius, Max Gerke, Boyd Skelley) 1:23.22, 3. Waukee (Asher Havenhill, Cooper Rogers, Sam Davey, AJ Abram) 1:23.39, 9. Linn-Mar (Ryan Horsey, Blake Behrens, Colin Taylor, Cooper Callahan) 1:26.78, 14. Iowa City High (Joe Polyak, Chase Loftus , Will Larson, John Weigel) 1:28.19, 18. CR Washington (Grady Wheeler, Jack Dake, Ryan McCaffrey, Ian Lucas) 1:30.05, 22. CR Jefferson (Carter Prull, Parker Gammill, Tate Kuennen, Anthony Lee) 1 : 31.91.

100 backstroke: 1. Asher Havenhill (Waukee) 48.85, 2. Aiden Carstensen (LM) 49.48, 3. Ian Steffen (LM) 50.17, 8. Holden Carter (IC) 51.94, 12. Drew Chamberlain (dec.) 52.56, 15. Boyd Skelley (ICW) 53.30, 17. John Weigel (ICH) 53.83, 21. Braxton McGrath (Wburg) 54.28, 29. Andy Luo (ICW) 56.77, 32. Jesse Gunter (CRK ) 57.74

Para 100m breaststroke: 1. Isaiah Picard (Indianola) 2:33.75

100 breaststroke: 1. Kohen Ranken (SC Metro) 53.19, 2. Joshua Chen (Ames) 54.65, 3. Jordan Christensen (ICW) 55.66, 6. Joe Polyak (ICH) 57.72, 8. Carter Kirtz (VS) 58.75, 9 Kento Yahashiri (ICH) 59.36, 16. Blake Behrens (LM) 1:01.17 19. Brian Foerster (CRW) 1:00.70, 27. Nikolas Sung (ICW) 1:01.89, 32. Chase Loftus (ICH) 1:03.10

400m freestyle relay: 1. Waukee (AJ Abram, Cooper Rogers, Sam Davey, Andrew Reiter) 3:03.91, 2. Bettendorf (Max Wetteland, Carter Anderson, Noah Mitvalsky, Alex Stone) 3:04.00, 3. Linn-Mar (Cooper Callahan, Ian Steffen, Luke Kelley, Aiden Carstensen) 3:04.11, 4. Iowa City West (Max Gerke, Holden Carter, Jordan Christensen, Damon Conzemius) 3:08.21, 14. CR Washington (Ian Lucas, Josiah Wickham, Ian McGrath, Grady Wheeler) 3:20.03, 16.CR Jefferson (Carter Prull, Sheppard West, Tate Kuennen, Anthony Lee) 3:21.41, 18.CR Kennedy (Will Bowden, Jesse Gunter, Mason Turner, Spencer Kramer) 3: 9:50 p.m., Iowa City High (Will Larson, Chase Loftus, Charlie Pfohl, John Weigel) DQ.

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