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Dwyer Goes The Distance Again in 500 Freestyle

03/07/2019, 10:30am CST
By Tom Schardin

Sean Dwyer made history for the Prior Lake boys swimming team March 2.

The senior became the only Laker in program history to win two state titles in the same event. He defended his 500 freestyle crown at the Class AA competition at the University of Minnesota Aquatic, while also taking second in the 200 freestyle for a second straight year.

Dwyer and Chris Baker are the only two Lakers to win multiple state titles. Baker was the state champion in 1984 in both the 50 freestyle and 100 breaststroke. 

Marshall Heskin won the state title for Prior Lake in the 100 butterfly in 2014, while P.J. Lenz won the state diving title last year.

Dwyer was the only Laker at state competing in an individual swimming event. The Lakers also had two relays there, while senior Erik Thompson competed for a second straight season in diving.

Prior Lake ended up 16th in the team standings with 51 points. Top-ranked Edina won the title with 268 points, followed by No. 6 Chaska/Chanhassen (205) and Wayzata (176). Fifth-ranked Eden Prairie was fourth (175), followed by No. 2 Minnetonka (153).

Last year, Prior Lake was seventh in the team standings. The team has been in the top 10 four of the last six seasons with its best finish being fourth in 2016.

Meanwhile, Dwyer went into the state as the No. 1 seed in the 200 freestyle and the No. 2 seed in the 500 freestyle. After the prelims March 1, Dwyer had the second-best time in the 200 freestyle (1:40.43) and the third-best mark in the 500 freestyle (4:36.13).

In the finals, Dwyer was not able to catch Edina senior Andrew Gray, who won with a time of 137.68. Dwyer broke his own school record, finishing 0.19 behind Gray in second place (1:37.87).

Last year, Dwyer's runner-up time was 1:38.42, which set a new school mark.

In the 500 freestyle, Dwyer couldn't match his school-record, winning time of last year (4:29.75). But he didn't have to. He improved on his prelim time by more that four seconds, winning with a time of 4:32.00. Runner-up Timothy Rizzo of Woodbury was more than two seconds behind Dwyer (4:34.29), while top-seeded Will Whittington of Stillwater was third (4:36.05).

Dwyer was sixth at state in both the 200 and 500 freestyle as a sophomore.

In the relays, Prior Lake was 13th in the 200 freestyle and 14th in the 400 freestyle. The 200 team of Dwyer, juniors Jaden Chant and Owen Mattila and sophomore Gunnar Anderson just missed a spot in the finals (top eight), taking ninth in the prelims with a time of 1:29.06. That was 0.01 back of the eighth-best time by Eden Prairie.

In the finals, the Lakers went a little slower, finishing in 1:28.27.

The 400 freestyle team of Dwyer, Chant, Mattila and sophomore Tyler Buss was 14th after the prelims (3:13.25) and ended up in the same spot in the finals (3:15.81).

In diving, Thompson fell short of qualifying for the finals (top 20) in the prelims Feb. 28. He ended up 21st with a six-dive score of 134.90. That was 0.30 points shy of the top 20.

Last year, Thompson earned a spot on the state medal stand, finishing seventh overall with an 11-dive score of 365.80 points.

Tag(s): HOME  Boys Swim & Dive