Kutsch, Canfield swim team soar at district
By BOB ETTINGER
The Canfield boys swim team gets an explosive burst from its relay teams.
One of those relay teams got its spark from Bobby Kutsch at the Division II district swim meet at Cleveland State’s Robert F. Busbey Natatorium on Friday evening.
Kutsch swam a personal best in the first leg of the 200-meter freestyle relay to spur the Cardinals to a second-place finish and a berth in the state meet next week in Canton.
“I had just found out I missed going to state in the 500 by one place,” Kutsch said. “My adrenaline was going. I just pushed myself to go faster and faster.”
Kutsch, Jason Paris, Cullen Brady and Kamran Sarac combined to finish in 1:26.04.
“I saw Bobby go 22.4, a personal best by two seconds, and everything just stemmed off of that,” Sarac said.
“Bobby set the tone,” Cullen Brady said. “And he had just got done swimming a 500.”
That performance spurred the Cardinals to a third-place finish in the team standings.
“I’m extremely proud,” Canfield coach Connor Brady said. “I’m absolutely blown away. Last year, they were fifth. This is the highest finish we can remember.”
The 400-meter freestyle relay team of Kutsch, Paris, Sarac and Cullen also qualified for the state meet in placing second in 3:11.86.
“The 400 free is the last event and everyone is quiet and watching,” Connor Brady said. “It’s one of the biggest events. I did not expect such a good time, but everyone did that today. I couldn’t expect them to do any better. I’m a very proud first-year coach.”
Sarac was third and Paris was fourth in 21.49 and 21.75, respectively, in the 50-meter freestyle. Sarac was also fifth in the 100-meter butterfly (52.29). Cullen Brady placed 10th in the 100-meter freestyle in 48.67.
Zac Sine of Canfield took fourth in the Division II diving competition with 372.40 points.
The Cardinals’ 200-meter medley relay of Matthew Peckman, Joe Klepec, Robby DiDomenico and James Dietz was eighth in 1:45.53.
Jared Mindek of Howland punched a ticket to Canton in placing fourth in the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:00.34.
“It’s pretty exciting,” Mindek said. “I kinda don’t think about it, but it’s a major accomplishment that I made it. I’m pretty happy with (my race). I improved my time and had a good race overall.”
Rebekah Klem of Crestview was fifth in the girls 100-meter breaststroke in 1:06.56 and teammate Rachel Klem was seventh in the same even in 1:07.42. Rachel Klem was also 10th in the 200-meter individual medley in 2:14.17.
Kutsch just missed a berth at the state meet in placing ninth in the 500-meter freestyle in 5:01.66.
Liberty’s Olivia Benson pulled a 10th-place finish in the 50-meter freestyle in 25.45.
Megan Janak of Boardman placed eighth in the Division I diving competition with 328.90 points.