Boys swimming: Naperville Central prevails in crosstown meet
By Neil Shalin For Sun-Times Media January 4, 2013 10:30PM
Naperville Central's Noah Wood swims the 200 freestyle against Naperville North. | Mike Mantucca ~ For Sun-Times Media
Noah Wood is determined to make it to state in the 500 freestyle this year, after coming so very close in the past two sectionals.
On Friday, the Naperville Central senior continued on the road to state qualification with an impressive win over his Naperville North friend and club teammate Eric Curia to help host Redhawks to a 103-83 win over their crosstown rival.
The Redhawks won despite finishing behind the Huskies in all three relays.
“Eric and I know each other very well,” said Wood. “We know each other’s strategies and it’s fun to go out to catch him in the last few hundred yards. Our team always has a good time racing against Naperville North. There’s just a different feeling going into the North meet because we have so many friends on that team.”
Wood’s time in the 500 was 4:57.16, a little more than a second ahead of Curia’s 4:58.30.
“It’s tough to get so close to qualifying for state and then still miss out,” said Wood. “But you have to use it as motivation. You just have to move on. I’m trying to do a lot more pace-work this year and its starting to pay off. I want to be a little faster going into sectional but I’m sure I’ll get there.”
Naperville Central coach Mike Adams praised Wood for his performance, and he was pleased with Connor Lamb’s two wins and Christian May’s first-place finish, but generally he wasn’t all that happy with the Redhawks racing despite the team victory.
“We just need to race better,” Adams said. “We’ve been working very well in practice. I realize we’re tired and sore and hurting, but in meets we have to seize the moment and go for it. We’re better than we’ve been, but we have to be even better. All the way up and down the line, we have to keep improving every week.”
Lamb’s victories came in the 200 IM in 2:02.10 and in the 100 breaststroke with a 1:03.74. Other Naperville Central event winners were: May in the 50 freestyle and Joe Gucwa in diving.
Sam Hiller of Naperville North took the gold in four races. He won his individuals, the 200 freestyle and the 100 backstroke, and he was also a member of the winning 200 medley and 400 freestyle relay teams.
The Huskies Kevin Kielma won the 100 butterfly and Steven Missak was first in the 100 free.
“We had some great swims in the relays,” said Naperville North coach Andy McWhirter. “Steven, Kevin and Sam were the standouts today. Kevin is working hard to secure the state time in the fly, and Missak is a very versatile swimmer who could go in the 50 and the 100 free at sectionals.”