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CN's Taylor wins state title in 100-yard breaststroke

February 24, 2013
Columbus North High School

    INDIANAPOLIS -- Junior Cody Taylor captured an individual state championship Saturday (Feb. 23), leading the Columbus North boys swimming team to a sixth-place team finish in the IHSAA State Finals.
    Taylor won the 100-yard breaststroke in school-record 55.25 seconds to highlight a performance that included an individual second-place effort and legs on relays that placed second and third.
    Together, joined with two top-five finishes by classmate Sam Loescher, the Bull Frogs amassed 131.5 points to finish in sixth place among 56 teams that scored in the competition at the Natatorium at IUPUI.
    In the 100 breast, Taylor surged to first after posting the third-fastest time in the preliminary round on Friday (Feb. 22). In the finals, he zipped past top qualifier Brennan Berger of Carmel and second qualfier Ian Finnerty of Bloomington South. They had respective finals' times of 56.08 and 56.48. 
     “About 75 (yards), I knew I was going to win because I just saw (Berger) coming back to me, and my adrenaline kicked in,” Taylor told The Republic. “I was like, ‘I’m going to hammer him.’ I didn’t even think I was going that fast, but that’s a pretty good time.”
    Taylor also placed second in the 200 individual medley. He was timed in a school-record 1:50.54, more than three seconds better than his prelim time of 1:53.98. Chesterton's Blake Pieroni, the top qualifier, won the event in 1:48.86.
     “I would have liked to get first, but after how I felt (Friday) night, second place is really good,” Taylor told The Republic. “(Friday) night, it was kind of in the plan to go easy, but when I touched the wall (Friday) night, I just felt bad. I felt really good (Saturday).”
    Taylor and Loescher joined with sophomore Matt Freudenthaler and senior Sam Parker on the 200 free relay and the 400 free relay. Taylor, Loescher, Freudenthaler and Parker combined for a school-record 1:24.99 to place second in the former event. Loescher, Parker, Freudenthaler and Taylor swapped their order later for a 3:07.83 time to place third in the latter.
    North Central won the 200 free relay in 1:24.26. Chesterton claimed the 400 free relay in 3:04.77.
    Loescher also provided two strong individual swims. He placed fourth in the 100 free in 46.10 and tied with Castle's Trey Kolleck for fifth in the 50 free in 21.28. Pieroni won the 100 free in a state-record 44.28, while Northridge's Austin Flager took the 50 free in 20.37.
     “We graduated a lot of points last year,” Columbus North coach Jim Sheridan told The Republic. “These guys had to learn to move up into the top eight to continue the points, and to have four guys here this year and continue this movement where everybody takes home a medal, it’s a tremendous accomplishment out of these young men.”
    Chesterton won four individual events, two relays and left with a slew of records en route to claiming the team championship. The Trojans accumulated 238.5 points to take the top spot. It was the school’s third state championship in six years under head coach Kevin Kinel.
    North Central, which was trying to win its first team title since 2006, finished as the runner-up with 203.5 points. Three-time defending state champ Carmel was third with 173 followed by Penn with 169, Hamilton Southeastern with 144 and Columbus North.
    Chesterton junior Aaron Whitaker set two individual records in the 100 butterfly (47.33) and 100 backstroke (47.29), two events he also set records in during Friday’s preliminary heats, and was part of the Trojans’ record-setting 400 freestyle relay (3:01.05) on Friday as well.
    Whitaker's Friday night record swim (47.84) was .01-hundredths faster than his older brother Kyle, who set the previous mark in 2009. Whitaker then teamed with classmates Pieroni, twin brother Ethan Whitaker and Patrick Curley in the 400 free relay on Friday. The same group won the championship on Saturday in 3:04.77.
    Pieroni was also a double winner setting a state record in the 100 freestyle in 44.28 and the 200 individual medley in 1:48.86. The previous 100 record of 44.36 was set in 2001 by Ryan Wochomurka of Columbus North.
    Andy Hurst, Jack Waller, Aaron Whitaker and Pieroni also won the day’s opening race, the 200 medley relay, in 1:32.45.
    Trevor Carroll of South Bend St. Joseph repeated as the 200 freestyle state champion with a 1:37.10 and Joshua Arndt of LaPorte won his second straight 1-meter diving title with 484.0 points.
    Bloomington North senior Max Irwin won the 500 freestyle in 4:23.60. His attempt at a repeat in the 200 fly came up short to as he settled for second place to Ethan Whitaker in the event.
    Austin Flager of Northridge won the 50 free in 20.37 and finished second to Aaron Whitaker in the 100 back in 49.17, an event he won in 2012.
    Irwin was recognized following the meet by the IHSAA Executive Committee as this year’s winner of the Herman F. Keller Mental Attitude Award. Irwin ranks eighth in his senior class of 346 students with a 4.435 GPA through demanding honors and AP level courses.
    Named his team’s co-captain, Irwin finished the day as the 500 freestyle state champion and finished second in the 100 butterfly, an event he won a year ago. He is the son of Phil and Liz Irwin of Bloomington and will head to the University of Texas next fall where he will study math and physics.
At Natatorium at IUPUI
    Team scores: Chesterton 238.5, North Central 203.5, Carmel 173, Penn 169, Hamilton Southeasten 144, Columbus North 131.5, Jeffersonville 124, Bloomington North 116, Avon 97, South Bend St. Joseph 94, Bloomington South 82, Northridge 82, Franklin 51, Westfield 37, Batesville 34, Fort Wayne Snider 32, Valparaiso 26, Carroll (Fort Wayne) 26, Evansville Memorial 25, Fishers 25, Munster 23, Center Grove 22, Highland 22, Castle 20.5, LaPorte 20, West Lafayette 18, Noblesville 16, Lafayette Jeff 16, Griffith 15, Greencastle 14, Floyd Central 14, Cathedral 14, Lawrence Central 13, Mishawaka Marian 12, New Albany 12, Michigan City 12, Bedford North Lawrence 11.5, Terre Haute South 11, Homestead 11, Zionsville 9.5, South Bend Riley 9, Perry Meridian 9, Greenfield-Central 8, Plainfield 7, Park Tudor 7, Brebeuf Jesuit 6, Elkhart Central 6, Brownsburg 6, Pendleton Heights 4, Warren Central, Centerville 3, Lafayette Central Catholic 3, Indian Creek 3, Warsaw 2, Lawrence North 1, Bremen 1.
Event Results
    200 MR: 1, Chesterton (Andy Hurst, Jack Walker, Aaron Whitaker, Blake Pieroni) 1:32.45.
    200 free: 1, Trevor Carroll (South Bend St. Joseph) 1:37.10.
    200 IM: 1, Blake Pieroni (Chesterton) 1:48.86; 2, Cody Taylor (Columbus North) 1:50.54.
    50 free: 1, Austin Flager (Northridge) 20.37; 5 (tie), Sam Loescher (Columbus North) 21.28.
    Diving: 1, Joshua Arndt (LaPorte) 484.00.
    100 butterfly: 1, Aaron Whitaker (Chesterton) 47.33 (state record).
    100 free: 1, Blake Pieroni (Chesterton) 44.28 (state record); 4, Sam Loescher (Columbus North) 46.10.
    500 free: 1, Max Irwin (Bloomington North) 4:23.60.
    200 free relay: 1, North Central (Sam Lorentz, Theodore Steinkamp, Joseph Krahulik, Joseph Steinkamp) 1:24.26; 2, Columbus North (Cody Taylor, Sam Loescher, Matt Freudenthaler, Sam Parker) 1:24.99.
    100 back: 1, Aaron Whitaker (Chesterton) 47.29 (state record).
    100 breast: 1, Cody Taylor (Columbus North) 55.25.
    400 free relay: 1, Chesterton (Blake Pieroni, Ethan Whitaker, Patrick Curley, Aaron Whitaker) 3:04.77; 3, Columbus North (Sam Loescher, Sam Parker, Matt Freudenthaler, Cody Taylor) 3:07.83.

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