State Meet | The golden one

Andrew McCarthy won his second straight 500 freestyle state title at the 3A swim meet at the King County Aquatic Center. He took first with an All-American consideration time of 4:33.09. - Chad Coleman/Bellevue Reporter
Andrew McCarthy won his second straight 500 freestyle state title at the 3A swim meet at the King County Aquatic Center. He took first with an All-American consideration time of 4:33.09.
— image credit: Chad Coleman/Bellevue Reporter

(A slide show of the state meet can be seen here.)

FEDERAL WAY – Last year, Andrew McCarthy celebrated in his swimming lane after winning his first high school state title.

This year, with increased pressure to repeat as a champion, he showed no nerves while making his second state championship victory look easy.

Andrew McCarthy won his second straight title in the 500 freestyle Saturday at the 3A state meet at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way. 

He took the lead in the first quarter of the race and never looked back. He won with an All-American consideration time of 4:33.09 – more than five seconds faster than his time in the prelims. 

Andrew McCarthy  becomes the first Bainbridge male swimmer to repeat as a state champion since Olaf Olson won diving titles in 2006 and 2007, and the first swimmer to post an All-American time since Austin Hallett in 2008.

But all of that history was not a focus for Andrew McCarthy, who said he does his best not to think about the pressure of being the favorite.

“I just swim my own race,” he said. “That’s something you have to do every time you swim.”

Head coach Kaycee Taylor said Andrew McCarthy does well to keep his focus on what he is doing.

“He was really focused on getting that All-American consideration time,” he said, noting that Andrew had improved his split times from his prelim swim. “It just shows the maturity of his swimming that he knows what he needs to do. That was fantastic. I think he should be very proud of the swim – I know I am. That was amazing.”

McCarthy also took fourth in the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:43.03.

Colin Chupik also turned in a solid performance at the state meet, placing fifth in the 100 free  with a time of 48.28 and sixth in the 50 free (22.29).

“In the 50 I jammed my turn a little bit and fell behind, but I did pretty well and got a good time and a good place,” he said. “In the 100 I swam really strong.”

Todd McCarthy and Spencer Alpaugh also had strong swims. 

Todd McCarthy won the consolation finals of the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:47.89 and took sixth in the consolation finals of the 200 freestyle. Alpaugh took seventh in the 200 individual medley finals and eighth in the 500 freestyle finals.

Andrew McCarthy said he was glad to see his brother be successful.

“I would have liked him to be in the finals because he’s definitely capable of it,” Andrew said.

Taylor said Todd McCarthy showed a lot of poise in the pool after a rough day in the prelims.

“He came into the 500 (with an) improved (mindset,” he said. “That was huge.”

Taylor also felt that Alex Nowjack, who finished seventh in the consolation finals of the 100 backstroke, showed a lot of improvement as well. 

The 200 medley relay team of Todd McCarthy, Jared Bell, Andrew McCarthy and Chupik won the consolation finals with a time of 1:42.88 while the 400 relay team of Todd McCarthy, Andrew McCarthy, Alpaugh and Chupik took fourth with a time of 3:17.17.

The team finished fifth with 147 points, the second straight year the Spartans have finished in the top five. Mercer Island won the team title with 289 points.

While Taylor admitted he was a bit frustrated with not getting a trophy (teams that place in the top four earn a trophy), he was more than happy with how the team performed. 

They lose several seniors and their captains in Blake Harper, Quinn Cullen and Trevor Williams, but both Taylor and McCarthy are excited for next year when several swimmers from BISC become freshman and several underclassmen improve over the offseason through club swimming.

“We’re definitely shooting for top three at state,” Andrew McCarthy said.”



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