OLATHE — In his fourth year with the Free State boys swimming team, Evan Eskilson saw his Firebirds team come away with its fourth consecutive second-place finish at the Sunflower League meet.
But individually, Eskilson surpassed his own expectations when he finished in first place in both the 100-yard freestyle and 100 back at Saturday’s Sunflower League meet at Prairie Trail Middle School.
“I’m really excited,” Eskilson said. “I had hopes for what I would accomplish, and I definitely surpassed that. I’m really happy with my swims and I’m excited (to go to state). I think that I can improve upon my swims, taking what I learned from them (today) and carrying it forward.”
Eskilson edged out Shawnee Mission East senior Evan Root in both the 100 freestyle and 100 back. Eskilson posted a final time of 47.33 in the freestyle, while Root finished with a time of 47.73.
In the back, Eskilson finished with a time of 52.20, while Root finished at 53.05.
“It was really fun to get out and race Evan Root in both my races,” Eskilson said. “Shout out to him, he did a really nice job. It was fun racing him.”
Shawnee Mission East still went on to take first place in the 13-team meet with 285.5 points — 103.5 points ahead of Free State, which recorded 182 points.
“I’m happy with the team,” Eskilson said. “Not everything went perfectly, as you would expect. But then we pulled it out in the end, so I’m really happy with second place.”
Free State also took first place in the 200 medley relay, which consisted of Eskilson, Reilley Moore, Dean Stuart and Riley Sirimongkhon-Dyck. The group finished with a time of 1:40.04.
“I thought that we did really well as a team,” Moore said. “We just came together, and second place is amazing, so I think everyone’s really happy about that.
Moore, who was competing in his first Sunflower League meet as a freshman, also finished third in the 200 individual medley and 100-yard butterfly. Jake Viscomi was fourth in the 100 backstroke and sixth in the 100 butterfly.
“I thought I had a pretty good meet,” Moore said. “It’s obviously my first time doing high school swimming, so I think third place is a good place to start out.”
As for Lawrence High, the Lions took fifth place with 113 points. They received a boost with first-place finishes in the 200 and 500 freestyles from senior Stephen Johnson.
“I came in and was I like, ‘I’m just going to race as hard as I can,’” Johnson said. “That’s how it always is. I didn’t have any time specifically in mind. I just wanted to see if I can get first in both my events, and I did.”
Johnson said his team was “a little slower” swimming on the second day of the event, but he was still pleased with his team’s fifth-place finish in the meet. Alex Heckman was runner-up in the 100 freestyle and fifth in the 100 freestyle.
“A lot of the guys aren’t used to swimming two days in a row, so that was a little rough on them,” Johnson said. “But our relays were great. We got two people under 54 (seconds) now, and that was amazing.”
LHS took fourth place in the 400-yard freestyle relay. Johnson was joined in the relay by teammates Heckman, Treyton Trujillo and Braden Augustine. Each swimmer clocked in under 54 seconds, and the Lions finished with a time of 3:26.01. Tyler Jones added a fifth-place finish in the 500 freestyle.
“That’s all I could have asked for, for our team,” Johnson said. “Fifth place is wonderful.”
Sunflower League Meet
Saturday at Prairie Trail Middle School
Team scores: Shawnee Mission East 285.5, Free State 182, Olathe Northwest 162.5, Olathe South 152.5, Lawrence High 113, Olathe East 100, Shawnee Mission North 86.5, Shawnee Mission South 86, Leavenworth 76, Shawnee Mission West 64, Shawnee Mission Northwest 52, Olathe North 29, Olathe West 4.
FSHS, LHS results
200 medley relay — 1. Evan Eskilson, Riley Sirimongkhon-Dyck, Reilley Moore, Dean Stuart, FS, 1:40.04; 10. Braden Augustine, Dylan Bierschbach, Treyton Trujillo, Luke Dunlap, L, 1:50.83.
200 freestyle — 1. Stephen Johnson, L, 1:43.20; 7. Chad Anderson, FS, 1:53.11; 14. John Loos, FS, 1:56.37; 15. Tyler Jones, L, 1:57.58; 17. Finn VanDyke, FS, 2:00.87.
200 individual medley — 3. Reilley Moore, FS, 2:03. 51; 12. Ben Aldridge, FS, 2:19.63; 13. Giovani Lule-Paredes, L, 2:18.99.
50 freestyle — 2. Alex Heckman, L, 22.28; 9. Adam Ziegler, FS, 23.26; 17. Dean Stuart, FS, 24.90.
100 butterfly — 3. Reilley Moore, FS, 53.69; 6. Jake Viscomi, FS, 55.27; 9. Riley Sirimongkhon-Dyck, FS, 57.98; 14. Treyton Trujillo, L, 1:00.74.
100 freestyle — 1. Evan Eskilson, FS, 47.33; 5. Alex Heckman, L, 50.06; 9. Adam Ziegler, FS, 51.64; 10. Dean Stuart, FS, 52.70; 18. Braden Augustine, L, 54.81.
500 freestyle — 1. Stephen Johnson, L, 4:48.13; 5. Tyler Jones, L, 5:10.73; 7. Devon Lyle, FS, 5:09.45; 12. John Loos, FS, 5:25.86; 17. Nathan Stoddard, L, 5:51.47.
200 freestyle relay — 5. Alex Heckman, Dylan Bierschbach, Braden Augustine, Stephen Johnson, L, 1:34.95.
100 backstroke — 1. Evan Eskilson, FS, 52.20; 4. Jake Viscomi, FS, 57.77; 8. Devon Lyle, FS, 58.78.
100 breaststroke — 7. Riley Sirimongkhon-Dyck, FS, 1:04.77; 8. Chad Anderson, FS, 1:05.48; 18. Dylan Bierschbach, L, 1:11.94.
400 freestyle relay — 2. Adam Ziegler, Reilley Moore, Jake Viscomi, Evan Eskilson, FS, 3:21.09; 4. Alex Heckman, Treyton Trujillo, Braden Augustine, Stephen Johnson, L, 3:26.01.