INDIANAPOLIS — Austin Flager has brought another state swimming title home to Northridge High School.
Flager won his second state title in as many years on Saturday, Feb. 23, bringing home the gold in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 20.37, beating runner-up Bryce Timonera of Batesville by nearly a half-second at the IHSAA State Swimming and Diving Finals in Indianapolis.
“Last year Austin was second in the 50 and was just out-touched at the line,’’ Raiders’ coach Joe Keller said. “So this year, we put a big emphasis on his start and tried to create a different kind of race for him, so he wouldn’t get behind. So today when he made the turn even with the other swimmers, I knew it was over because no one is going to beat him in the final 25 yards.’’
Flager’s time was the second fastest recorded in a state championship race in the 50.
In addition to his title, Flager finished as the state runner-up in the 100 backstroke — an event he won in 2012. Flager posted a time of 49.17, while Chesterton’s Aaron Whitaker won the event with a state record time of 47.29
“When you consider that his time in the backstroke was the fourth-fastest in meet history and he still finished two seconds behind, it’s pretty amazing what Whitaker did,’’ Keller said. “We thought Austin might swim a little faster, but there is no way to complain about a state runner-up finish. We were thrilled with his performance.’’
Flager’s title comes just two weeks after his senior classmate Brittany Walters won the school’s first girls state swim title when she was victorious in the 500 yard free. Northridge is the only school in 2013 that won a boys’ and girls’ state title.
The Penn Kingsmen finished fourth in the team event, which was won by Chesterton. Penn finished with 169 points, just four behind third-place Carmel.
Penn’s Tanner Anderson had a big day, as the senior finished third in the butterfly and fourth in the breast stroke, while also being a part of the Kingsmen’s 200 medley relay team that finished second to Chesterton and the 200 free relay team that came home third.
Northridge’s Jon Stoller placed sixth in the 200 IM, while the Raiders’ 200 medley relay team was fifth. Northridge finished 11th in the team standings.
In the diving competition, Marian’s Anthony Rice finished seventh with a total of 428.85, while Central’s Nick Ponce was 11th with 390.25 points. LaPorte’s Josh Arndt won the event for the second straight year.
IHSAA State finals
At Indiana University Natatorium
Team scores: Chesterton 238.50, North Central 203.50, Carmel 173, Penn 169, Hamilton Southeastern 144, Columbus North 131.50, Jeffersonville 124, Bloomington North 116, Avon 97, SB St. Joseph’s 94, Northridge 82, Bloomington South 82. Also: 34. Marian 12. 46: Central 6.
Summary of Events
200 medley relay — Chesterton 1:32.45, Penn (Mate Kovacs, Tanner Anderson, Bowen Anderson, Seamus Lucerro-Dixon) 1:33.34. Also: Northridge (Austin Flager, Jon Stoller, Austin Bernth, Takoda Friesen) 1:34.44.
200 freestyle — Trevor Carroll (St. Joseph) 1:37.10, Ethan Whitaker (Chesterton) 1:39.58. Also: 30: Seth Cripe (Northridge) 1:50.07.
200 individual medley — Blake Pieroni (Chesterton) 1:48.86, Cody Taylor (Columbus North) 1:50.54. Also: 6. Jon Stoller (Northridge) 1:54.49. 12. Tanner Anderson (Penn) 1:55.32.
50 freestyle — Austin Flager (Northridge) 20.37, Bryce Timonera (Batesville) 20.83. Also: 12. Nate Kovacs (Penn) 21.49.
Diving — Joshua Arndt (LaPorte) 484.00, Cody Coldren (Hamilton Southeastern) 464.25. Also: 7. Stephen Rice (Marian) 428.85. 11. Nick Ponce (Central) 390.25. 20. Taylor Berkey (Northridge) 248.95. 21. Wayne Zhang (Penn) 168.00.
100 butterfly — Aaron Whitaker (Chesterton) 47.33, Max Irwin (Bloomington South) 47.88. Also: 3. Bowen Anderson (Penn) 49.65. 13. Jon Stoller (Northridge) 51.87.
100 freestyle — Blake Pieroni (Chesterton) 44.28, Bryce Timonera (Batesville) 45.80. Also: Seamus Lucero-Dixon (Penn) 47.42. 28. Adam Bratten (Goshen) 48.72.
500 freestyle — Max Irwin (Bloomington North) 423.60, Trevor Carroll (St. Joseph) 4:26.01. Also: 4. Bowen Anderson (Penn) 4:30.63. 9. Hugson Bursch (Penn) 4:35.40. 20 Joe Mueller (Northridge) 4:46.10.
200 freestyle relay — North Central 1:24.26, Columbus North 1:24.99. Also: Penn (Tanner Anderson, Mate Kovacs, Travis Bavar, Seamus Lucero-Dixon) 1:25.06. 8: Northridge (DQ).
100 backstroke — Aaron Whitaker (Chesterton) 47.29, Austin Flager (Northridge) 49.17. Also: 25. Kyle Morris (Penn) 54.28. 28. Adam Bratten (Goshen) 55.29
100 breaststroke — Cody Taylor (Columbus North) 55.25, Brennan Berger (Carmel) 56.08. Also: 4. Tanner Anderson (Penn) 56.80. 29. Zac Hershberger (Wawasee) 1:01.90.
400 freestyle relay — Chesterton 3:04.77, Carmel 3:06.37. Also: 6. Penn (Mate Kovacs, Bowen Anderson, Travis Bavar, Seamus Lucero-Dixon) 3:09.26. Also 21. Northridge (Austin Bernth, Joe Mueller, Conner Sandt, Takoda Friesen) 3:16.11.