CANTON, Ohio – The preliminary rounds proved to be an accurate forecast of how some of the key Division I races would unfold on the final day of the OHSAA state and swimming diving meet at the C.T. Branin Natatorium in Canton.
Friday’s prefatory runs were highlighted by record-setting performances from Sycamore (Cincinnati, Ohio) High School brothers Carson and Jake Foster.
In their first finals appearance Saturday, the brothers were 1-2 on Sycamore’s first-place 200 medley relay squad (1:28.94) that edged St. Xavier (1:28.94) for Cincinnati’s first Division I title of the meet.
Carson, a junior, who won 2018 state titles in the 200 freestyle and the 500 freestyle, set state records in the prelims in the 200 freestyle and the 100 backstroke.
Carson re-wrote multiple record books in the 200 free, cruising to a state championship with a national record time of 1:32.99, breaking the previous nation-best time of 1:33.26 set by Grant Shoults of Rancho Santa Margarita Catholic (California) in 2016.
“Training, practice, that time has always been a goal of mine. Just being able to do it is really exciting,” Carson said.
Carson picked up his third state title with a 46.62 showing in the 100 backstroke, just shy of his state-best time of 46.28 from Friday.
Like his younger brother, senior Jake set state records in the preliminaries, notching Ohio’s best times in the 200 individual medley and the 100 breaststroke.
Jake watched Carson’s first individual championship from the on-deck spot. In the next boys event, he ran away with the same time (1:43.99) from prelims in the 200 IM. Teammate Ansel Froass was on his tail as the runner-up.
“No, it doesn’t get better than that,” Jake said. “He’s my teammate both on the school team and on club, so I know Ansel very well and I’m very happy for him.”
Jake wrapped up his second individual title in the 100 breaststroke, finishing in 53.76.
Jake Foster again – he runs away with the 100 breaststroke at 53.76, just shy of the state record he set yesterday in the prelims (53.53). His second title of the day. #cincyswimming pic.twitter.com/v02sZZeXXF
— Shelby Dermer (@EnquirerShelby) February 24, 2019
In the final race of the meet – and their final preps event together – Jake and Carson were the final two swimmers in Sycamore’s 400 freestyle relay squad that edged St. Xavier for a state championship.
In total, the Fosters combined for eight state championships and shared the Most Outstanding Swimmer Award, which helped the Aviators become the Division I team runner-up for the second time in school history (1986). Froass also finished fourth in the 100 free and Erik Menchhofer placed sixth in the 500 free to contribute to Sycamore’s total of 240 points.
“Going into the season, we knew Sycamore had a really special team. To do it this weekend was just amazing,” Jake said.
Carson added: “That was definitely a goal and a big accomplishment – being the best public school in the state. The whole season has been about the team rather than the individual (accolades). It’s really exciting to show that and do as best as we could, because it was about the team.”
Jake will swim in college at the University of Texas, but is glad his one-year stint of dominating the prep pools was so memorable.
“Even though I only did high school swimming for one season, it’s been so great. The meets I’ve done for high school have been some of the most fun meets I’ve ever been to.”