Magi swim & dive defeats Grand Forks Central, West Fargo in double dual
Once the Minot High School boys swim and dive team set the tone in Friday’s double dual, the Magicians rode the momentum wave to two victories.
Minot defeated West Fargo 123-62 and earned a 147-37 victory over Grand Forks Central in Friday’s double dual. A balanced attack helped the Magi stave off some tough East competition and keep their winning streak alive.
“Both teams have some outstanding athletes that really push our guys,” Minot head coach Jake Solper said. “It was fun to watch how the races would unfold. It’s neat, too, because we only get to compete against those East teams two or three times in an entire season.”
Dominic Yoder (26.08), Griffin Schaeffer (27.46), Jaxon Reinke (24.88) and Jack Wolsky (24.86) spearheaded Minot’s start. That quartet posted a total time of 1:43.28 in the 200-yard medley relay.
Minot’s William Walker-Rozo (2:05.30) took second place in the 200-yard freestyle event. Alex Moe (2:05.34) finished in third place.
“The coaching staff usually isn’t overly disappointed when our team isn’t able to have big time drops,” Solper said. “It tells us, ‘Yep, we’re on the right track. We’re finally getting the guys to the point where they’re a little bit broken down.’ When it comes time to build them back up, they will be bigger, faster and stronger. That’s what we need.”
Alexander King (2:08.36) earned a convincing victory in the 200-yard individual medley event. He finished nearly nine seconds ahead of second-place finisher Kasey Chase (2:17.32) of West Fargo.
In a hotly contested 50-yard freestyle event, Minot’s Dominic Yoder (23.17) secured second place. Grant Schaeffer (23.38) slotted into the third-place spot.
Minot kept rolling into the 100-yard butterfly event. Walker-Rozo (57.22) nabbed first place, while Reinke (57.25) finished just behind him in second place.
King struck once again in the 100-yard freestyle event. His time of 51.32 gave him another first-place finish.
“We’re in the middle of the grind of our training,” Solper said. “It shows up a little bit. Some of the guys’ legs aren’t really there for them the way they had been earlier in the season. All in all, I think all the guys really showed up to race.”
Grant Schaeffer (5:19.80) enjoyed another solid first-place finish in the 500-yard freestyle relay. Levi VonBonkern (5:30.40) and Wolsky (5:35.64) rounded out the top three spots.
The 200-yard freestyle relay proved to be critical for the Magi. The quartet of Griffin Schaeffer (23.80), Josh Boen (24.38), King (23.52) and Peyton Bartsch (22.76) edged out West Fargo by one one-hundredth of a second.
“I had a really good start,” said Bartsch, who served as the anchor. “I was just focused on trying to close the gap as much as I could.”
Reinke kept his strong evening going with a win in the 100-yard backstroke event. The freshman finished with a final time of 58.22.
Griffin Schaeffer (1:04.17) earned a second-place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke event. West Fargo’s Timothy Hulbert (1:01.82) took the victory.
The Magi concluded the evening with a bang. Yoder (51.78), Grant Schaeffer (51.67), Walker-Rozo (53.36) and King (52.14) took first place in the 400-yard freestyle relay.
“Having a lot of depth helps,” Bartsch said. “Then, we can place high in a lot of events.”
Minot’s Layton King captured another victory in the 1-meter diving event. His final score of 239.30 cemented his first-place finish.
Student-athletes from all schools cheered on their teammates and opponents during the dives.
“I love the sport of swimming,” Solper said. “It’s a great sport for sportsmanship. The coaches for the Grand Forks (Central) and the West Fargo Packers teams are absolutely incredible coaches. They hold sportsmanship as one of the most important elements of competitive swimming and diving. It really showed today, how well the guys get along. They were shaking each other’s hands after their races, smiling and laughing.”
Added Bartsch: “Coach (Solper) does a really good job of stressing sportsmanship and making sure that we all display it against other teams.”
Next up, the Magi will host the Minot Invite beginning at 10:30 a.m. this morning
Jimmy Lafakis covers Minot High School sports and Class B high school sports. Follow him on Twitter @JJLII30.