Oshkosh North/Lourdes swimmer Sumner Latta made no bones about what his goal was this season after making it to the WIAA Division 1 state swim meet last season as part of the 200-yard medley relay.
Return to the state meet as an individual in the 100-yard breaststroke.
If the Ashwaubenon Invite was any indication this past Saturday, he’s well on his way.
Latta took first place in the 100 breaststroke (1:02.42) at the 10-team event, and has been ascending since the season started.
Oshkosh Northwestern Media caught up with Latta Monday night to talk about his senior season and an array of other topics.
Oshkosh Northwestern Media: What’s your senior year been like so far?
Sumner Latta: It’s been great, I’ve been enjoying every moment of it.
Oshkosh Northwestern Media: You took first place in the 100-yard breaststroke at the Ashwaubenon Invite this past weekend and fifth in the 50-yard freestyle, do you feel like you’re starting to peak?
SL: I feel like this is the best high school season I’ve ever had. The new coach (Dalton Anderson) is definitely helping with that.
ON: What’s been the difference?
SL: Our practices. They’ve been short, sprint-based sets which I really strive in.
ON: What’s the friendly rivalry between you and Ryan Revolinski like?
SL: I don’t know, I mean I think we just accept the fact that we’re both fast swimmers in our events and if we need to swim each other’s events it just happens I guess, we don’t really have a problem with it.
ON: How nice is that to have somebody on your team that not only are great teammates to each other like you guys are but you also push each other?
SL: Yeah, you know in practice we’re always neck-and-neck on every set and I think that just makes it a whole lot better and more enjoyable.
ON: Why is the breaststroke such a good event for you?
SL: I just find it easy and I’ve been swimming for 12 years and since Day 1 the breaststroke has been my event.
ON: Is that when you knew that this event was good for you, 12 years ago when you first started, or did it gradually work its way into that?
SL: It took me a while to really develop my stroke and then once I got it developed it really started getting better and better from there.
ON: What was state like last year for you?
SL: I really enjoyed it. It was a great experience being my second year in Wisconsin and I loved it. I enjoyed being a part of the (200-yard medley) relay and watching Ryan swim his event and place really well. I just loved the whole thing.
ON: How much does that then drive you to make sure you get back there again this year?
SL: It’s really made an impact. I told myself at the beginning of the season that it’s state or bust, and I’ve just got to practice as hard as I can and do everything I can to get my goals accomplished.
ON: How important is that this year to try and qualify as an individual to state for you?
SL: It’s pretty important. It’s what I’ve been training for in the offseason and it’s, I don’t know, it’s pretty important.
ON: Any other goals for you guys the rest of the season?
SL: Hopefully we can get another relay (to state) with some of the other swimmers Jarrett Lieder and Brandon Drexler. We just want to have fun.
ON: Any swimming plans after high school? Are you going to swim in college?
SL: I’ve been looking at some schools. Yeah, I’ve been looking and I’ve been accepted to a couple of schools and I’ve been talking to some coaches, but that’s pretty much it right now. I really like aviation so that’s one thing I want to go in to.
ON: Aviation huh? So you like flying?
SL: Yeah I do.
ON: How long have you liked that?
SL: Well my dad (Jim) is a pilot so I mean I grew up in a flying world. It’s always been around me and my dad is teaching me how to fly and I’ll get my pilot license soon.
ON: What does your dad fly?
SL: He’s a corporate pilot.
ON: So did your dad bring you flying when you were younger or was it something you’ve just always been around and knew that he did?
SL: A couple times when I was younger we went up once or twice but then for my 16th birthday he took me up for my birthday and then I just realized ‘wow, this is fun’.
ON: So what kind of a plane did he take you up in?
SL: It was just a little two-seater, it wasn’t anything fancy.
Jake Van Camp: (920) 426-6661 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Oshkosh West, senior