Tuscola records fall at state meetWenzel, Gomez, MacDonald, Darguzas set THS swim records in 200, 400 free relays
CARY — Seven swimmers from the Tuscola boys team — Mason MacDonald, Johnny Darguzas, Kevin Wenzel, Eric Gomez, Riley Laursen, Crayton Morrow and Stephen Wenzel — finished with 96 points and a ninth place overall finish at the North Carolina High School Athletic Association Class 3-A Swimming Championships on Saturday.
At the state meet, the Mountaineers finished in the top 15 in all individual and team events and set two new school records (one twice).
“The results that these seven talented young men accomplished is a testament to their work ethic, dedication and effort that each of these young men give to their sport each and every day,” said Tuscola Head Coach Kevin Fitzgerald. “These Mountaineers represented Tuscola and our community by demonstrating good sportsmanship, supporting their teammates and giving all they had in each and every event.
“We could not be prouder of these seven young men for the way that they competed and represented their team, their school and their community. Throughout the year, they have all demonstrated that if you put in the work, you will reap the rewards and their results are certainly proof of that.”
Results of the NCHSAA
Class 3-A State Championship
Tuscola’s 200 medley relay team of Stephen Wenzel (back), Laursen (breast), Morrow (fly) and Kevin Wenzel (free) finished 15th overall with a time of 1:49.48.
“The 200 medley relay was the last event of my career and to make the finals was a perfect way to end my swimming career,” said Morrow, a senior.
In the individual events, Darguzas captured seventh in the 200 IM (2:01.18) and finished 12th in the 100 fly (53.89), posting season-best times in both events.
MacDonald finish fifth in the 50 free (21.90) and was seventh in the 100 free (48.25) and also achieved season-best times in both events.
Gomez (57.52) and Stephen Wenzel (57.65) both posted season-best times, while battling it out for 13th and 14th place, respectively, in the 100 back.
The final two events for the Mountaineers at the state 3-A championship were the 200 free relay and 400 free relays.
Stephen Wenzel, Eric Gomez, Johnny Darguzas and Mason MacDonald finished ninth in the 200 free realy and set a new school record with a time of 1:32.85, for the second time on Saturday. The old record of 1:33.81 was set in 2016 by Jack MacDonald, (Mason) MacDonald, Darguzas and Stephen Wenzel.
In the final event, Tuscola’s 400 free relay team of Darguzas, MacDonald, Gomez and Stephen Wenzel set another Tuscola record, while finishing seventh overall with a time of 3:22.97, breaking the old record 0f 3:24.12 set in 2016 by Jack MacDonald, (Mason) MacDonald, Stephen Wenzel and Darguzas.
“It was great to see all the hard work all of us have put in the pool pay off,” said MacDonald. “We, as a team, had great swims and set two new school records. All of us did fantastic with multiple best times. We came together as a team and did an amazing job. I couldn’t ask for better teammates than the ones I have. I would like to thank my parents, Ian and Jay MacDonald, for supporting and encouraging me the whole way. I would also like to thank my SMAC Coaches, Charlie McCanless and Scott Simmons as well as the Tuscola coaches Kevin Fitzgerald, Sue Miller and Mary Miller for pushing me to be my best.”
“The meet was great,” said Gomez. “My teammates and I had great races in the 200 and 400 free relays setting new records for Tuscola. I am proud of how we swam as a team in the relays and in the individual events.”