The meet wasn’t decided until the last event, when Eagan won the 400-yard freestyle relay to finish one point ahead of Rosemount and earn its seventh consecutive Section 3AA boys swimming and diving championship.
Eagan emerged as winners by a single points, 364-363, after the Feb. 21 section swimming finals at Bluewater Aquatic Center in Apple Valley. Dylan Huynh, Hans Broman, Roni Shrestha and Jackson Kehler swam the final relay in 3 minutes, 16.68 seconds. Rosemount was second in 3:18.19. Both relays will compete in the Class AA state meet this weekend at the University of Minnesota.
Kehler, an Eagan sophomore, will advance to state with a full slate. Kehler grabbed two individual Section 3AA championships, winning the 200 freestyle in 1:40.15 and the 500 freestyle in 4:34.15.
Kehler’s 200 freestyle time broke a 25-year-old section meet record previously held by Tom Malchow of St. Thomas Academy. Malchow is a former state high school champion who went on to win an Olympic gold medal and hold the world record in the 200-meter butterfly.
Kehler is seeded first in the Class AA state meet in the two distance freestyle events. He also paired with Emilio Santoyo Lopez, Shrestha and Thomas Kehler to win the Section 3AA 200 freestyle relay in 1:30.17.
Santoyo Lopez, a junior, finished second in the 100 freestyle in 48.69 for a state trip, and junior Jacob Frost also was second in 1-meter diving with a score of 386.25.
Rosemount will send two individual swimmers to the University of Minnesota for state. Sophomore Evan Kindseth took second place in the 200 freestyle in 1:45.91 to qualify. In a battle of teammates, Kindseth just out touched senior Keegan Henning in the 500 freestyle by .07 seconds to finish second to Kehler. Kindseth and Henning both qualified for state and are seeded fourth and fifth in the 500 freestyle.
Henning also qualified in the 200 individual medley in 1:58.18.
Eastview finished fifth in the Section 3AA team standings with 276.5 points. The 200 medley relay team of Kyle Kunisaki, Reid Lambert, Daniel Panikkar and Nicholas Phomsouvanh started off with a third-place swim and a state qualifying time of 1:38.56. Kunisaki, a junior at Eastview, also advances with a second-place finish in the 100 backstroke in 54.70. Lambert, a senior, will swim the 100 breaststroke in his final Minnesota state meet after his 1:00.63 time and second-place finish in the section meet.
Junior Alex Sulistyo was the lone individual champion for Eastview. Sulistyo scored 427.85 points in diving, securing the championship by more than 40 points.
Apple Valley was seventh in the overall standings with 185 points. Notable for the Eagles were junior diver Luke Fischbach placing third and junior swimmer Greyson Marcott grabbing third in the 100 butterfly and fourth in the 200 individual medley.
State diving preliminaries will be 6 p.m. Thursday. Swimming prelims will be 6 p.m. Friday. The top 16 in each event will return to the U of M for the finals at 6 p.m. Saturday.
Other top eight finishers from Section 3AA included:
200 freestyle – Eastview junior Max Blodgett, fifth; Eagan senior Jonathan Chambers, sixth; Rosemount freshman Sullivan Labno, seventh; and Eagan junior Roni Shrestha, eighth.
200 individual medley – Eagan junior Hans Broman, third; Rosemount senior Brogan O’Donnel, fifth; and Eagan junior Chuck Steffen, seventh.
50 freestyle – Santoyo Lopez, third; Eastview sophomore Nicholas Phomsouvanh and Rosemount senior Cole Forgey, tied for fifth; Eastview junior Daniel Panikkar, seventh.
1-meter diving – Rosemount senior Luke Rexing, fourth; Rosemount seventh-grader Lucas Gerten, fifth; Eagan senior Adi Ambalam, seventh.
100 butterfly – Rosemount senior Devin Anderson, fourth; Broman, sixth; Eastview junior Kyle Kunisaki, seventh; and Apple Valley sophomore Brady Chisholm, eighth.
100 freestyle – Panikkar, third; Forgey, fourth; Eagan senior Dylan Huynh, sixth; and Rosemount senior Jonny Wise, eighth.
500 freestyle – Rosemount sophomore Jacob Olsen, sixth.
100 backstroke – Rosemount ninth-grader Matthew Warweg, fourth; Chambers, fifth; and Chisholm, sixth.
100 breaststroke – O’Donnel, third; Phomsouvanh, fourth; and Steffen, seventh.