Boys swimming preview: Big shoes to fill for Irish swimmers
Moving on from last season won't be easy for the Rosemount boys swimming and diving team.
Last year, with the help of several talented seniors, the Irish enjoyed a storybook season. Rosemount won the True Team and season-end section meets. It took third place in the True Team state meet and placed fourth overall at the Class 2A state meet to end the season. Team records were broken.
"We just graduated some amazing kids," Rosemount coach Jim Ertl said. "They were team guys. Every one of them is talented. They were all varsity swimmers and scored points for our varsity."
Now the Irish need to put last year in the past, as hard as that may be.
"Our goals have changed just slightly," Ertl said. "When it comes down to the end, we want to do well at sections and do well at True Team. That's our philosophy. Everyone will contribute to this team just as we did with the girls. We'll have 40 kids and we'll need a lot of them to make it happen.
"There are always kids that come out of nowhere when we do this and we have that to look forward to."
While Ertl expects new swimmers and divers to make a name for themselves, there are plenty of swimmers returning from last year's squad.
Rosemount set a new state record in the 200-yard medley relay last year and three of those swimmers return. Devon Meeks is now a senior and he already owns three individual team records and parts of two others.
"Obviously he can swim anything and do it well," Ertl said. "We can put him where we need to for dual meets and he'll step up. He loves to race."
Seniors Max Hubbard and Tony Spiel also return from the record 200 medley relay team.
Hubbard and Meeks were also part of a state-winning 200 freestyle relay. Hubbard swam the 100 freestyle at state last season.
Seniors David Officer, Jesse Osvold, Mike Otto, and Michael Young return.
David Baker, Jake Lehmann, Alex Roberts, and Anthony Tooley make up a veteran junior class. Tooley will be part of the diving crew, along with Jim Peterson.
Sophomores Luke Dowell, Nick Jeffrey, John Kuznia, Tyler Lawson, John Malecha, Conor Manning, Braden McCormack, Matt McCormack, and Jacob Stern return with experience.