Grafton senior makes quick work of two pool marks at Elk Invitational
The beat goes on for Al Nennig.
Already the holder of most Grafton High School boys’ swimming records, the senior added two more marks to his resumé at the Elk Invitational in Elkhorn last Saturday.
Nennig set pool records while winning the 50-meter freestyle (24.28 seconds) and 100 breaststroke (1:05.71). His times broke the old standards of 25.48 and 1:08.63.
“Al had great races. He blew away both records,” Grafton coach Mark Minz said.
Nennig had the lone wins for the Black Hawks, who placed seventh in the 10-team meet with 212 points.
Grafton’s next-best finishes were seconds by senior Brad Kempka in the 100 freestyle (57.69) and the 200 medley relay of Tyler Kish, Nennig, Kieran Paddock and Kempka (1:58.53).
Minz said his team had hoped to place in the top three in the overall standings but was missing swimmers due to illness. In addition, the Hawks were disqualified in the last event, the 400 relay race.
“It was a good meet, but we had a frustrating finish to the day,” Minz said.
Grafton’s other top-10 finishes were fourths by Ben Gosselin in the 100 freestyle (58.31) and the 200 freestyle relay of Gosselin, Ben Stewart, Justen Hilgart and Kempka (1:48.38); sixths by Kempka in the 50 freestyle (26.26) and Gosselin in the 200 freestyle (2:09.75); eighths by Paddock in the 200 individual medley (2:36.36) and 100 butterfly (1:09.23); and a 10th by Stewart in the butterfly (1:11.29).
Beloit Memorial won the team championship with 302 points, and Greenfield/Greendale and Janesville Craig shared second place with 299.
Grafton 93, Homestead 87
A frustrating tradition ended for the host Hawks in a North Shore Conference meet Dec. 13.
Winning 11 of 12 events, Grafton defeated the Highlanders for the first time in Minz’s 11 seasons as head coach.
“The goal was to win every event except the 500 freestyle, and we did that,” Minz said.
“Our captains had a little talk in the locker room before the meet, and everyone came out pretty fired up. It was fun to see.”
In individual races, the Hawks got double wins from Nennig in the 100-yard butterfly (55.74) and 100 backstroke (56.0), Gosselin in the 200 freestyle (1:57.31) and 100 freestyle (52.5) and Kempka in the 200 individual medley (2:15.01) and 100 breaststroke (1:10.96).
Grafton’s other individual firsts included Paddock in the 50 freestyle (24.79) and Zach Greenwood in diving (186.55 points).
The Hawks’ relay wins came from the 200 medley team of Kish, Nennig, Paddock and Kempka (1:47.8), the 200 freestyle team of Brett Rasmussen, Paddock, Gosselin and Kempka (1:36.84) and the 400 freestyle team of Gosselin, Kish, Paddock and Nennig (3:37.98).
Minz singled out Gosselin for his individual races.
“I really enjoyed how smooth Ben was in his freestyle events,” he said. “He looked very good.”
The Hawks’ final competition before the holiday break will be a 6 p.m. dual meet at West Bend on Thursday, Dec. 20.
Nicolet 116, Port Washington 65
Illness took its toll on the host Pirates, who were missing six swimmers in a North Shore Conference loss Dec. 12.
“We didn’t win, but I thought we did pretty well with that many guys out,” Port coach Melissa Hoogester said.
The Pirates had three first-place finishes, including two from Alex Mehre in the 200-yard individual medley (2:21.17) and 100 butterfly (59.56).
Mehre was also part of the winning 200 medley team with Perry Schaefer, Callum Toal and Connor LaCosse (1:53.5).
Placing second for the Pirates were Connor LaCosse in the 50 freestyle (23.95) and 100 freestyle (53.08), Christian LaCosse in the butterfly (1:06.26), Toal in the 100 breaststroke (1:15.39), the 200 freestyle team of Daniel Gardner, Diego Anderson, Stephen Nosko and Toal (1:48.52) and the 400 freestyle team of Mehre, Nosko, Christian LaCosse and Connor LaCosse (3:44.91).
The meet was Pirates’ last before the holiday break. They will return to competition Thursday, Jan. 3, with a 6 p.m. conference dual meet at Whitefish Bay.
Image Information: GRAFTON’S AL NENNIG broke pool records in the 100-meter breaststroke and 50 freestyle at the annual Elk Invitational in Elkhorn last Saturday. Nennig also holds most of the boys’ swimming records at his own school. Photo by Sam Arendt