This one was close — real close.
On a day where both the O’Fallon Breakers and the Highland Splash battled each other — and eight other teams — for over six hours, it came down to just 124 points in determining this year’s Midwest Swim Conference champion. The final tally: O’Fallon amassed 2,228.5 points, while Highland totaled 2,104.50. St. Clair finished a distant third with 1,498.
“Our kids battled to the very end,” said assistant coach Jessica Hattan. “Near the end of the meet, we began the free relays with a slight lead and it felt like each of those 10 relays were a war. In the end, we won four of those and finished second in five more, preserving the win. But a DQ (disqualification) — resulting in zero points — would have spelled disaster. Fortunately, the kids were aggressive yet still swam clean races. They did an awesome job.”
It was an entire team effort for sure. The Breakers opened the meet by sweeping all four medley relays and led the entire day with balanced scoring across most events and age groups.
In terms of specific performances, seven Breakers captured individual event championships. Matthew Stooke swept the field in the 13-14 boys 100 free, 100 back, and 50 fly, while his brother, Michael Stooke, did the same in the 11-12 boys 50 free, 100 IM and 50 fly. Sophie Gaylord captured titles in the 9-10 girls 25 free 100 IM, and 25 fly. And single titles were grabbed by Dillon Albertyn (9-10 boys 25 back), Camden Kimmell (11-12 boys 50 fly), Shelby Bushong (13-14 girls 100 breast), and Kylie Clark (15-18 girls 100 free).
Relay wins were notched by the 12-under girls medley relay squad of Jenna Denton, Samantha Stooke, Sophie Gaylord, and Sophia Rapini, as well as the 13-18 girls medley relay foursome of Sophia Tamblyn, Shelby Bushong, Sierra Workman, and Carlee Auld.
On the boys side, the 12-under medley squad of Dillon Albertyn, Alex Hattan, Mike Stooke, and Douglas Gaylord captured a win, as did the 13-18 boys team of Matthew Stooke, Mike Meyers, Jake Howey, and Noah Tinge.
Free relay firsts were posted by the 8-under boys squad of Trey Filyaw, Andrew Workman, Braden Obszanski, and Logan Luechtefeld, the 9-10 girls team of Sophie Gaylord, Iris Park, Alyssa Albertyn, and Samantha Stooke, the 11-12 boys foursome of Camden Kimmell, Aiden Thornburg, Alex Hattan, and Michael Stooke, and the 13-14 boys squad of Ethan Stein, Will Richards, Matthew Stooke, and Noah Tinge.
Beyond event champions, a number of Breakers also earned top six individual event medals. That list includes:
- Logan Luechtefeld (2nd 25 free/3rd 25 back/4th 25 fly),
- Iris Park (2nd 25 free/5th 25 breast/3rd 25 back),
- Douglas Gaylord (3rd 25 free/5th 100 IM/2nd 25 fly),
- Jenna Denton (2nd 50 free/3rd 50 back/4th 50 fly),
- Noah Tinge (3rd 100 free/2nd 100 IM/4th 50 fly),
- Ethan Stein (4th 100 free/3rd 100 IM/5th 50 fly),
- Samantha Stooke (2nd 25 breast/4th 100 IM/3rd 25 fly),
- Edde Sue Doehring (4th 25 breast/6th 25 back/5th 25 fly),
- Alex Hattan (6th 50 breast/5th 100 IM/4th 50 back), and
- Brady Gotter (3rd 100 breast/4th 100 IM/2nd 100 back).
Other top-six finishes were posted by
- Alyssa Albertyn (4th 25 free/4th 25 back),
- Camden Kimmell (5th 50 free/4th 100 IM),
- Shelby Bushong (3rd 100 free/4th 100 IM),
- Carlee Auld (4th 100 free/3rd 100 back),
- Will Richards (6th 100 free/4th 100 breast),
- Kylie Clark (3rd 100 breast/2nd 100 free),
- Jake Howey (5th 100 free/5th 50 fly),
- Ella Peterson (5th 50 breast/6th 100 IM),
- Rory Polson (6th 50 breast/5th 25 back),
- Sophia Rapini (3rd 100 IM/6th 50 back),
- Aiden Thornburg (2nd 50 back/5th 50 fly),
- Michael Meyer (2nd 100 back/6th 50 fly),
- Alexis Schillinger (5th 100 breast),
- Jack Peterson (5th 100 breast),
- Christopher Meyer (6th 100 IM),
- Sophia Tamblyn (3rd 100 back),
- Ethan Schillinger (4th 25 fly),
- Isaiah Mata (4th 50 fly),
- Sierra Workman (4th 50 fly),
- Andrew Workman (4th 50 free),
- Dillon Albertyn (5th 25 free), and
- Trey Filyaw (5th 25 back).
Age Group High-Point Trophies
These trophies are awarded by the Conference to the top point-producers in the meet for each age group. They were earned by Matthew Stooke (1st 13-14 boys), Sophie Gaylord (1st 9-10 girls), Michael Stooke (1st 11-12 boys), Kylie Clark (2nd 15-18 girls), Logan Luechtefeld (3rd 8-under boys), and Shelby Bushong (3rd 13-14 girls).
With the season over, the Breakers are looking forward to yet another strong season next year.
“We won our second consecutive Midwest Swim Conference regular season title as well this year, going 8-0 in dual meets,” coach Hattan said. “And we have a lot of good swimmers coming back next season. Moreover, we know that many kids will get better and become a bigger factor. So we should pretty solid again next season. On the other hand, five seniors (Sierra Workman, Caitlyn Lloyd, Jake Howey, Max Gibbs, and EJ Wilder) are aging out. They have been good swimmers and great kids over the years, so we’re sad to see them go. At the same time we look forward to watching them achieve continued success in college and beyond. ”