Facebook Twitter

High school boys swimming: Olympus flexes muscles in convincing repeat 5A state championship

SHARE High school boys swimming: Olympus flexes muscles in convincing repeat 5A state championship

Olympus’ Evan VanBrocklin swims to a win the 100-yard butterfly at the 5A boys swimming state meet at the Wasatch Aquatic Center in Heber City on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021.

Annie Barker, Deseret News

Throughout its school history, Olympus’ boys swimming program has lived in the shadow of nearby rivals Skyline and Brighton, two programs that have a combined 38 state championships. It could take decades and decades to ever match that success, but the program is trending in that direction.

A year after Olympus won its first state championship in school history, it backed it up with an even more dominant state title on Saturday at the 5A state meet at the Wasatch Aquatic Center in Heber City.

Olympus won seven of 11 races and had 13 swimmers finish in the top eight of the eight individual events to roll to 354 points and the team title. Brighton finished second with 229 points.

“I’m thrilled, I really am. I’m grateful to be a part of the program, the school that I’m a part of. The faculty and staff I work with and these kids are just special,” said Olympus coach Tom Thorum, who took over the program in 2014.

Olympus’ overall dominance was never more evident than in the 100 butterfly and 100 breaststroke.

Evan VanBrocklin, Alexander Turney and Bridger Sink posted the top three times in the 100 fly, and then Turney, Jack Saber and Sink went 1, 2, 4 respectively in the 100 breaststroke.

Turney’s time of 55.60 broke his own overall state record of 55.86, which he set in Friday’s preliminaries.

“I was just watching my teammates go so fast (this season) and I just wanted to compete with them so I just kept working harder and harder through the year. I can just congratulate my teammates really,” said Turney, who is just a junior.

A few years ago, Box Elder’s swimming program had the top three breaststrokers in the state, and Thorum remembers asking the Bees’ coach after the season how he was doing it. He said it was all about chemistry and the athletes pushing each other.

Thorum said that’s exactly what has happened in the Olympus pool this year in not only the breaststroke, but all events.

Turney’s time gave him instant all-American status, while Saber’s runner-up time of 56.27 puts him in all-American consideration. Earlier in the meet, Saber won the 50 freestyle.

“We’re so close as a team and we all push each other so much. We all just want to see each other succeed. We always show up and always do good,” said Turney.

VanBrocklin was also a double winner for the Titans as he backed up his 100 butterfly win — which included breaking a 27-year-old school record in the prelims — with a state title in the 200 individual medley.

VanBrocklin was named the 5A swimmer of the year after the meet. He was the only swimmer to repeat as state champion, as he won the 100 butterfly as a sophomore last season.

“I can put him in any situation and I can count on him, and it’s not just his swimming prowess, but it’s his work ethic, his relationship with the other swimmers on the team, his leadership. He’s the whole package,” said Thorum.

Olympus won all three relays, and Thorum really praised junior Matt Quackenbush for making that possible. The Titans finished runner-up to Brighton in the preliminary 400 freestyle relay, with Quackenbush posting a 51 second split in his second leg. Thorum told him for the Titans to have a chance, he needed to knock about a second off that time. He did his coach one better and swam it in 49.00.

“All of them have their journeys that are so interesting,” said Thorum.

Two other Region 6 swimmers enjoyed dominant state meets of their own, with Brighton’s Daniel Detjen and Cottonwood’s Jacob Ricci each winning two events.

Detjen won the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:41.37 and the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:40.83. He already owned the best time in Utah in both events this season and lowered them even further at the state meet.

Ricci’s time of 51.48 in the 100 backstroke is the best time in Utah this year, and his 100 free time of 47.08 is the second-best mark in the state.

5A boys state swim meet

Saturday’s finals

At Wasatch Aquatics Center

Team scores

1. Olympus, 354

2. Brighton, 229

3. Skyline, 208

4. Timpview, 175

5. Wasatch, 146

6. Springville, 129

6. Cottonwood, 129

8. Mountain View, 107

Individual results

200 medley relay

1. Olympus (Ian Conner, Bridger Sink, Alexander Turney, Jack Saber), 1:35.18

2. Cottonwood, 1:38.12

3. Wasatch, 1:38.37

4. Mountain View, 1:39.09

5. Skyline, 1:39.62

6. Brighton, 1:39.94

7. Timpview, 1:41.86

200 freestyle

1. Daniel Detjen, Brighton, 1:41.37

2. Trevan Staker, Provo, 1:44.51

3. Hunter Patterson, Wasatch, 1:45.80

4. Tallin Kunz, Provo, 1:46.41

5. Ethan Astle, Olympus, 1:47.04

6. Alijah Whitney, Timpview, 1:47.11

7. Isaac Vaughan, Springville, 1:48.02

8. Logan Browne, Highland, 1:48.04

200 individual medley

1. Evan VanBrocklin, Olympus, 1:53.89

2. Charlie Simmons, Brighton, 1:56.43

3. Andrew Lemon, Timpview, 1:57.10

4. Kaleb Feland, Spanish Fork, 1:57.68

5. Lukas Keele, Skyline, 1:58.02

6. Ian Conner, Olympus, 2:01.04

7. Aidan Salisbury, Cottonwood, 2:02.23

8. Tanner Harmon, Mountain View, 2:04.09

50 freestyle

1. Jack Saber, Olympus, 21.32

2. Jayden Hicken, Wasatch, 21.66

3. Clark Warren, Springville, 21.72

4. Noah Williams, Skyline, 22.15

5. Austin Mertz, Springville, 22.22

6. Sebi McFarland, Timpview, 22.29

7. Trey Jackson, Mountain Ridge, 22.37

8. Jackson Bryson, Park City, 22.43

100 butterfly

1. Evan VanBrocklin, Olympus, 49.62

2. Alexander Turney, Olympus, 51.83

3. Bridger Sink, Olympus, 52.75

4. Andrew Lemon, Timpview, 52.85

5. Tanner Harmon, 53.18

6. Jackson Bryson, Park City, 53.58

7. Lukas Keele, Skyline, 53.59

8. Dasch Springmeyer, Skyline, 53.83

100 freestyle

1. Jacob Ricci, Cottonwood, 47.08

2. Sebi McFarland, Timpview, 47.91

3. Ethan Astle, Olympus, 47.96

4. Bridger Nielson, Brighton, 48.76

5. Austin Mertz, Springville, 48.91

6. Jake Diaz, Skyline, 49.35

7. Xander Nelson, Brighton, 49.36

8. Isaac Wells, Orem, 50.23

500 freestyle

1. Daniel Detjen, Brighton, 4:40.83

2. Alijah Whitney, Timpview, 4:48.11

3. Hunter Patterson, Wasatch, 4:50.70

4. Matt Quackenbush, Olympus, 4:50.94

5. Ryan Wood, Bountiful, 4:52.47

6. Alex Schwartz, Park City, 4:55.26

7. Alex Stewart, Skyline, 4:55.35

8. Ian Conner, Olympus, 4:55.34

200 freestyle relay

1. Olympus (Noah Nelson, Ethan Astle, Jack Saber, Evan VanBrocklin), 1:27.93

2. Springville, 1:28.61

3. Brighton, 1:29.83

4. Skyline, 1:29.90

5. Wasatch, 1:29.94

6. Woods Cross, 1:30.76

7. Alta, 1:31.95

8. Provo, 1:33.87

100 backstroke

1. Jacob Ricci, Cottonwood, 51.48

2. Gauge Tobiasson, Mountain View, 53.14

3. Bryce Broadhead, Lehi, 53.18

4. Kalbe Feland, Spanish Fork, 53.22

5. Isaac Wells, Orem, 53.93

6. Gavin Holmberg, Murray, 54.37

7. Bridger Smith, Lehi, 54.57

8. Sean Honey, Timpview, 54.61

100 breaststroke

1. Alexander Turney, Olympus, 55.60

2. Jack Saber, Olympus, 56.27

3. Jayden Hicken, Wasatch, 56.39

4. Bridger Sink, Olympus, 57.09

7. Charlie Simmons, Brighton, 58.62

5. Aidan Salisbury, Cottonwood, 59.96

6. Tallin Kunz, Provo, 1:00.36

8. Bennett Murakami, Highland, 1:01.51

400 freestyle relay

1. Olympus (Ethan Astle, Matt Quackenbush, Ian Conner, Evan VanBrocklin), 3:11.19

2. Brighton, 3:12.34

3. Springville, 3:18.24

4. Timpview, 3:19.86

5. Skyline, 3:20.80

6. Cottonwood, 3:21.14

7. Mountain View, 3:23.25

8. Box Elder, 3:26.16