Boys swimming: Monarch, behind Keogh and DiFronzo, wins BOCO Invite

Apr. 20—BROOMFIELD — The Cage the Elephant song "Ain't No Rest for the Wicked" may have first been released 16 years ago, but it's Monarch junior swimmer Gavin Keogh who has been embodying that mantra as of late.

In doing so, he's been able to put up some wicked fast times this season.

At Saturday's BOCO Invite, which was held at the Broomfield Community Center, Keogh collected an initial victory in the 100-yard individual medley with a time of 50.87 seconds, then added three more in the 200 freestyle relay (1 minute, 26.24 seconds), the 100 backstroke (48.44) and the 400 free relay (3:07.15).

Everything the American-Irishman is doing right now is to prepare himself for two separate Olympic trials. The junior, who holds dual citizenship in both countries, will be vying for a spot in this year's Games in the 100-meter and 200-meter backstrokes. Ireland's Olympic Trials will take place in May, followed by the U.S. Olympic Trials in mid-June.

Clearly, his hard work is paying off.

"I think it's just fun to race," Keogh said. "I didn't really rest or taper going into it, because I actually went to practice this morning, before coming here, just to kind of get my workout in. That way I can train through this meet. And I actually hit a personal best in the 100 back."

Keogh, while impressive, served as only a small piece in the larger puzzle that made up Monarch's team win at the BOCO Invite. The Coyotes easily sped to victory with 702.5 points, beating out Fairview by a cool 147.5 points.

Junior Ethan DiFronzo, likewise, mastered all four of his events, including the same relays that Keogh threw his hat in the ring for. His individual golds came in the 50 free (20.84) and the 100 free (45.93).

He hopes to drop that 50 free time down below 20.10 seconds at the state meet next month.

"We're still in pretty intense training right now, so going fast at this meet, it's a confidence booster for state. I'm pretty happy with it," DiFronzo said. "There's a lot of fast competition, especially in the 50 (free) and the 100 (free), so I just got to get motivated."

Stacked from top to bottom

While Fairview couldn't quite match the level of talent that Monarch put in the water on Saturday, the Knights worked together for a second-place team finish with 555 points. They opened the meet by claiming gold in the 200 medley relay (1:35.90), then immediately followed that performance up with a win by junior Wesley Schlachter in the 200 free (1:44.34).

Schlachter ended his day with three outright victories — in the 200 medley relay, the 200 free and the 500 free (4:49.53), the latter of which he won by nearly seven seconds.

"I just wanted to go out and beat them ... because I know I can. I know that I have what it takes and I know my training. I know I have the ability to win those races. It was going out there and just showing that I can do it," Schlachter said. "The medley, it was awesome, because my team kind of gave me a great lead. I didn't coast, but I was able to kind of have a fun win to start it off."

He believes the Knights have been getting stronger with every passing year, and noted that the freshmen and sophomores of last season are producing extremely well in their older age this year. Fairview saw additional victories from junior Soren Koschmann (50 butterfly, 23.32; 50 back, 24.04) and senior Layton Sealman (50 breaststroke, 26.56).

"We had a lot of wins just as a team in general," Schlachter said. "I think it just shows how strong our team is. I know we didn't win the meet, but still getting second at a big invite like this is still pretty exciting."

Tapering for the right moment

Legacy junior DK Nakashima decided to take his BOCO meet a little bit more relaxed, competing in just the 25 free and the 400 free relay. Lately, he's been focusing more on his club responsibilities, but he's still reaping the rewards through his high school results.

"For club, we're starting to transition into long course season, so I'm starting to ease off the events until league and state," he explained.

Nakashima won the short sprinting event with a 10.01, then helped propel the Lightning to third in the relay. He — along with Tyler Mills, Austin Neeley and Aidan Bailey — ended the final event with a collective time of 3:20.35.

"With short races, I think it's important to work on every little thing, especially the dives, the underwater kicks, the strokes," Nakashima said. "I think the shorter the races, the more intricate you have to be with your stroke and technique."

Event winners:

200 medley relay: Fairview, 1:35.90

200 free: Wesley Schlachter, Fairview, 1:44.34

200 IM: Chayakorn Ngampatipatpong, Silver Creek, 1:59.77

100 IM: Gavin Keogh, Monarch, 50.87

50 free: Ethan DiFronzo, Monarch, 20.84

25 free: DK Nakashima, Legacy, 10.01

1-meter dive (11 dives): Rider Neeb, Silver Creek, 467.80 points

1-meter dive (6 dives): Casey Halloran, Monarch, 254.35 points

100 fly: Hector Mu, Legacy, 52.71

50 fly: Soren Koschmann, Fairview, 23.32

100 free: Ethan DiFronzo, Monarch, 45.93

500 free: Wesley Schlachter, Fairview, 4:49.53

200 free relay: Monarch, 1:26.24

100 back: Gavin Keogh, Monarch, 48.44

50 back: Soren Koschmann, Fairview, 24.04

100 breast: Chayakorn Ngampatipatpong, Silver Creek, 58.27

50 breast: Layton Sealman, Fairview, 26.56

400 free relay: Monarch, 3:07.15