SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP, Ohio — The St. Xavier swimming and diving program earned the top spot in the National Interscholastic Swimming Coaches Association (NISCA) rankings for a sixth consecutive year.
"We are very proud of our swimming and diving program and the achievements they have made over the years," St. Xavier athletic director Brian Reinhart said.
"People don't realize how much work is put in for a state championship much less a national championship. Our student-athletes and coaches dedicate themselves to push each other and raise the bar every year. It's truly a special program and it's great that they are recognized at the state and national level for their achievements."
The AquaBombers edged Louisville St. Xavier 6,506 to 6,503, or what amounted to .01 seconds in the final NISCA rankings. There were 168 schools who participated overall.
NISCA compiles, computes, and publishes the national rankings based upon a dual meet format each year. Points are awarded based on times achieved in actual competition.
The AquaBombers rallied to edge Louisville St. X head to head on Jan. 11 (143.5 points to 142.5).
The St. X swimming and diving team went on to win its 12th consecutive Ohio High School Athletic Association Division I state team title in Canton this past February.
St. X assistant coach Tom Keefe said the state-winning relay efforts set the tone as all three earned All-American status.
The 200 medley relay (1:27.97) included seniors Nate Buse, Scott Sobolewski and Jean-Pierre Khouzam along with junior Owen Taylor.
The 200 freestyle relay (1:20.86) included senior Ian Van Gorp along with Khouzam, Buse and Taylor. The 200 medley relay and 200 freestyle relay established new state records, Keefe said.
The top 400 freestyle relay (2:59.30) included Khouzam, Sobolewski, Van Gorp and Taylor.
The 'B' relays also contributed significantly to the top finish.
On Senior Night against Moeller, the 200 medley posted a 1:34.66 which resulted in 426 NISCA points. That relay included junior Nathan Wall, senior Cameron Jones, junior Tristan Menninger and senior Will Wowk.
The 200 freestyle relay of junior Cooper Williams, sophomore Logan Tobery, junior Will Morstadt and senior Brady Holmcob set a Greater Catholic League South division record of 1:27.26 and earned 405 NISCA points, according to Keefe.
The 400 relay against Louisville St. X covered the distance in 3:07.68 and earned 435 NISCA points. That included senior RJ Myers, Wal, Wowk and senior Kellen Roddy.
Three St. X divers also contributed including senior Ben Cutforth, junior Will Behimer and freshman Gavin Hang.
All three were top eight finalists at the Southwest District meet, with Cutforth and Behimer moving on to state. Those divers garnered 361 NISCA points and played a significant role in the final standings.
Junior Adam Lamping, senior Kyle Seilkop and sophomore Nicholas Gockerman also contributed this past season.
NISCA also presented All-American swimming honors. Seven St. X athletes were decorated for their achievements:
Senior Nate Buse (200 medley relay, 100 butterfly, 200 freestyle relay, 100 backstroke)
Senior Cameron Jones (100 breaststroke)
Senior Jean-Pierre Khouzam (200 medley relay, 50 freestyle, 100 butterfly, 100 freestyle, 200 freestyle relay, 400 freestyle relay)
Senior Kellen Roddy (500 freestyle)
Senior Scott Sobolewski (200 medley relay, 200 individual medley, 100 breaststroke, 400 freestyle relay)
Junior Owen Taylor (200 medley relay, 200 freestyle, 50 freestyle, 100 butterfly, 100 freestyle, 200 freestyle relay, 400 freestyle relay)
Senior Ian Van Gorp (200 individual medley, 200 freestyle relay, 400 freestyle relay)
St. X also announced 20 seniors earned Academic All-American status: John Alvord, Daniel Belyea, Peter Bradbury, Nate Buse, Ben Cutforth, Lucas Ecker, Keegan Graham, Brady Holcomb, Josh Holtman, Cameron Jones, Kirk Karbowsky, Jake Lesko, Andrew Lu, Kieran McKenna, RJ Myers, George Perry, Kellen Roddy, Scott Sobolewski, Jay Weil, Will Wowk.
The AquaBombers won the National Interscholastic Swimming Coaches Association (NISCA) all-time national dual meet championship in June.
Swimming World Magazine will announce its mythical title later in the summer.