BREMEN — When Culver Military Academy’s weary swim team clinched just the second unbeaten dual meet season in program history, the Eagles didn’t celebrate or cheer.
Worn out from a grueling week stretch in which they’ve swum three meets, CMA’s swimmers simply gave a subdued thank you to Bremen for hosting and thanks to both the Lions and Plymouth for the good competition after topping the three-way field with 140 points ahead of Bremen’s 102 and the Pilgrims’ 79 in the Eagles’ regular-season closer at Bremen Tuesday.
“The problem is we’ve had three very hard meets in seven days. That’s unheard of in swimming, and the boys are tired,” said CMA head swim coach Major Tom Duckett.
“This meet closes our dual meet season with those boys undefeated. Did you see them jumping up and down? That’s how tired they are.”
CMA closed out its undefeated regular season run with depth.
The Eagles claimed top honors in just four events as Javier Bravo, Mauricio Cohen, Jingyuan Liang and Sam Curtis won the 200 free relay, Curtis won the 200 free, Bravo won the fly, and Leopoldo Burguete outpaced the 500 free field by more than 13 seconds. But CMA went one-two in the 200 free, two-three in four different events and one-three in the 200 free relay to beat out the host Lions.
“This (undefeated regular season) only happened twice to the boys team in the history of the school. Once in 2007 or 08 and this one now,” said Duckett. “The team it happened to earlier had a lot of All American swimmers. We have none of that, so the depth is there.”
With just nine swimmers listed on its roster, Bremen had little hope of challenging CMA’s depth, but the Lions managed wins in eight different events to keep it competitive.
Nolan Filchak and Joe Zeltwanger each went four-for-four for the home team in wins as Filchak won the IM and backstroke, Zeltwanger won the 100 and 50 freestyle races, and both were members of Bremen’s winning 200 medley relay and 400 free relay teams.
“It’s definitely depth. We have strong guys, we have top-notch swimmers, but we definitely don’t have the depth right now,” said Bremen head coach Meredith Scott.
“Nolan’s definitely talented. He’s swum his whole life; he’s got the technique, and he has the heart and the desire and he’ll pull it out when he needs to. I can always count on him. Joe, he’s improved a lot this year. He didn’t swim last year. Starting out this season, he had speed, he had muscle, but he did not have technique, he didn’t have turns. He’s really put a lot of work in on the turns, the walls, the starts in the last month, and he’s just improved tremendously.”
Coming off a solid turn at the Northern Lakes Conference meet last Thursday and Saturday, the Pilgrims were also worn out at Tuesday’s three-way meet.
Plymouth’s highest individual finishes were put in by Elliott Eads with a third place in both the 50 free and the butterfly, while the Pilgrims’ 200 free relay squad of Clayton Maddox, Cody Poczik, Brady Ruffing and Jordan Wendel placed second in their event.
“We had a great NLC. We had lifetime best times, swam well, dove well. It was awesome. Tonight’s meet, you come back from that, and we’re not quite into the tapering faze yet so everybody’s a little tired,” said Plymouth head coach Leanne Senter.
“Neither time that (Eads) swam tonight was a best time, but he always competes well and swims hard. And it was nice to see Matt Pearson have some success getting that time back down in the 500 free.”
• CULVER MILITARY ACADEMY 140, BREMEN 102, PLYMOUTH 79
200 medley relay: 1. Bremen (Nolan Filchak, Stuart Schmeltz, Kevin Woodyard, Joe Zeltwanger) 1:48.89, 2. CMA, 1:49.23; 200 freestyle: 1. Sam Curtis (CMA) 2:00.14, 2. Zach Grant (CMA) 2:01.52; 200 individual medley: 1. Nolan Filchak (B) 2:04.13, 2. Leopoldo Burguette (CMA) 2:17.66; 50 freestyle: 1. Joe Zeltwanger (B) :24.04, 2. Jorge DelaVega (CMA) :24.37; Diving: 1. Ryan McCreary (B) 187.4, 2. Mauricio Cohen (CMA) 171.35; 100 butterfly: 1. Javier Bravo (CMA) 1:02.53, 2. Stuart Schmeltz (B) 1:03.83; 100 freestyle: 1. Joe Zeltwanger (B) :51.8, 2. Jorge DelaVega (CMA) :52.24; 500 freestyle: 1. Leopoldo Burguette (CMA) 5:23.45, 2. Kevin Woodyard (B) 5:36.67; 200 freestyle relay: 1. CMA (Javier Bravo, Mauricio Cohen, Jingyuan Liang, Sam Curtis) 1:31.97, 2. Plymouth, 1:44.77; 100 backstroke: 1. Nolan Filchak (B) :57.86, 2. Zach Grant (CMA) :59.1; 100 breaststroke: 1. Stuart Schmeltz (B) 1:09.92, 2. Bryan DeVries (CMA) 1:12.4; 400 freestyle relay: 1. Bremen (Jack Fanning, Nolan Filchak, Kevin Woodyard, Joe Zeltwanger) 3:35.5, 2. CMA, 3:39.65.