By Jim Rueda
Free Press Sports Editor
The end of the boys swimming and diving season my be drawing near, but Mankato East/Loyola head coach Tim Johnson is still tinkering with the lineup in hopes of getting as many competitors to state as possible.
The Cougars dropped a 94-84 Big Nine Conference decision to Rochester Century Friday, and Johnson was still mixing and matching his lineup. For the most part, he liked what he saw from his swimmers.
“We held Bobby (Schultze) out until the second half of the meet, and then he had to come back and do four sprint events,” Johnson said. “He did well in the first three, but I think he was tired by the time he got to the 400 (freestyle relay).
“We’re just trying to figure out where he’s going to fit in the best for him and for the team. Jack Adams is in a similar situation. He does a lot of things well, and we need to find out where he’s going to help us the most.”
East/Loyola’s first win on Friday came in the 50-yard freestyle where senior Corey Kriesel turned in a time of 23.95. He also won the 100-freestyle (51.90) and combined with Schultze, Sam Drummer and Brett Peterson to win the 400-free relay (3:38.56).
“Corey swam well tonight,” Johnson said. “He’s a tough kid; he’s just plain tough.”
Kriesel said it wasn’t his best day of the season, but his times are close to where he wants them to be.
“Last year I cut about three seconds off my times in the 100s after my taper, and I’m hoping the same thing happens this year,” he said. “I’d like to get the school record in the 100 freestyle, and I’d like to qualify for state in at least one individual event.”
Among the other individual winners Friday were Schultze in the 100 backstroke (57.39), Nathan Dreyer in the 100 breaststroke (1:10.14) and Tyler Willaert in the 1-meter dive (186.45 points). The Cougars swept the diving as Sam Nelson finished second (156.65) and Isaiah Warning was third (120.85).
East/Loyola is back in action today at the Northfield Invitational.