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Geneva's Reigle advances to finals at state swimming

Feb. 23—CANTON — Seven area swimmers competed in nine different events on Thursday during the first day of the Division II Ohio State High School Swimming Championships at the C.T. Branin Natatorium.

Nathan Reigle was the only swimmer from Ashtabula County, or Madison, to advance to the finals. The junior returns to compete today in the Division II 100 breaststroke finals.

Reigle swam a 1:00:08 in the 100 breaststroke prelims to finish 15th place.

"Geneva is super proud of Nathan for qualifying for the finals," Eagles coach Jamie Lee said. "He has worked hard this season, and he deserves it."

He also swam the 200 yard freestyle earlier in the evening finishing 20th in a time of 11:46.64.

During the first race Reigle went out a little quick, Lee said.

"It wasn't what he was hoping for," he said.

Lee said he planned to help Reigle recover from the first race and get ready for the breaststroke.

"At this point, there isn't much to say other than get him out of his head a little bit," Lee said.

Edgewood's Tyler Hill also swam the 200 yard freestyle, as well as the 500 freestyle. on Thursday evening.

Hill placed 22nd in the 200 free with a time of 1:48.18.

Edgewood swim coach and mother Gretchen Hill said the 200 freestyle was a new event for the junior swimmer.

"He just swam it in the last two invitationals," she said. "He has to learn how to swim it."

Hill then returned to swim the 500 freestyle and earn 17th place in a time of 4:54.62 which was about a second faster than his seed time.

LaLa Hanek, a Jefferson freshman, started off the evening with a 20th place finish in the 200 yard individual medley with a time of 2:16.63 and came back later with a time of 1:01.15 and a 30th-place finish in the 100 backstroke.

"It wasn't a bad swim," said Jefferson coach and her father, Steve Hanek. "She got out of her rhythm in the breast stroke [during the IM]."

Hanek said she also swallowed some water in the butterfly and had trouble recovering during the IM.

Madison's Cooper Myers finished 26th in the 100 butterfly with a time of 54.46 after swimming the same event for the Blue Streaks' 200 yard medley.

Madison swim coach Chris Elliott said his relay team, that included Carson Petersen, Adam Gibbons, Myers and Lindon Blake, decided early on to try and make it a special year.

Elliott said he talked with Myers shortly after he missed the state swim meet last year and planned to help him get to Canton for his senior season.

The other boys also accepted the challenge and earned a spot in Canton.

The team finished 25th with a time of 1:43.25 and worked hard to earn the spot.

"We were in the weight room five days a week," Elliott said.