FREEPORT, Ill. - The Hononegah boys swimming and diving team captured its school-record tying eighth straight varsity NIC-10 championship Saturday at Freeport Junior High School.
With the Indians trailing by six points heading into the meet's final event, the 400 free relay, the Hononegah team of junior Jacob McCabe, freshman Zain Miles, sophomore Jalen Stimes and junior Camden Leonard placed first with a time of 3:25.28. Boylan finished second and Guilford third to give the Indians a two-point victory with 256 points. Guilford finished second with 254 and Boylan had 233.
The HHS divers started the meet out with a second-place finish by sophomore Sam Parneis with 329.15 points. Junior Daniel Rebban was third with 292.75. That gave HHS a 5-point lead over the Vikings and 25 on Boylan.
The HHS swimmers were led by Leonard and junior McCabe. Leonard had impressive wins in the 200 IM and 100 free with season-best times in both, 2:03.32 and 49.11. McCabe won the 50 free (23.49). He was third in the 100 fly (58.04).
The top 12 swimmers and relays in the meet scored points for their teams. In the 200 free, sophomore Jalen Stimes was third (1:54.84), he was second in the 500 free (5:11.97). Freshman Miles was fourth in the 200 IM in 2:11.36 and swam a 53.11 to finish seventh in the 100 free.
Senior Brett Jones dropped over 1/2-second to finish sixth in the 50 free (24.49). Sophomore Ben Stimes finished eighth in the 100 fly and ninth in the 100 back with times of 1:02.12 and 1:04.70. Senior Aidan Berg was ninth in the 500 free in a personal best 5:39.97. Junior Zach Hale captured third in the 100 breast (1:07.47). Sophomores Sam Hayag and Matt Reidel were 10th in the 100 back and 100 breast, respectively.
The relays, which counted for double points, turned out to be key for the Indians. The 200 medley relay team of Hayag, Hale, Jalen Stimes and Jones finished fourth with each swimmer having season-best split times. The 200 free relay team of Miles, McCabe, Jones and Leonard finished first, edging out Guilford in 1:32.78. \
"This was a great test for a young team headed into next week's sectional meet," HHS head coach Christine Kuspa said. "Our boys battled all day to keep the streak going and gained some valuable experience. They will likely face a similar challenge next week as we try to capture a second straight sectional title."
• NOTES: The Indians divers are coached by Gary Wright Sr. ...The IHSA Sectional meet will be held Saturday, at Rockford Jefferson High School. Diving starts at 9 a.m. and swimming at 1 p.m.