Hamlik, Calwell finish strong at state swim meet

Camas places ninth in 4A; Hockinson fifth at 2A

By Erik Gundersen, Columbian Trail Blazers writer

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FEDERAL WAY -- Kasey Calwell and Jaron Hamlik both spent Saturday chasing All-Americans.

And while they didn't catch any swimming studs, they both had days to be proud of.

Hamlik, a senior for Prairie, placed third in the Class 3A 100-yard butterfly and 100 backstroke, finishing both races in All-American consolation times.

"It felt good," said Hamlik. "I got personal bests in both races. I wish I hadn't just gotten third, but oh well."

Hamlik had the misfortune of racing against some of the best swimmers the state has seen in a while.

In the 100 butterfly, Hamlik finished behind Bellevue's Todd McCarthy, who borke the meet record with his winning time of 49.12 seconds. McCarthy broke his own record set Friday in the preliminaries. It was also an All-American Automatic time.

Tommy Thach of Kennedy was second in 50.30 followed by Hamlik's 50.34 -- both All-American consolation times.

McCarthy had another All-American automatic time to win the 100 back in 48.64 seconds. Carson Montemayor of Chief Sealth was second in 50.35 and Hamlik third in 51.16, again both All-American consolation marks.

Hamlik was the only swimmer from Prairie to make it to the state meet and he plans to swim in the club season before retiring from the game.

While he wanted more, Hamlik didn't come away disappointed.

"I feel like I've done pretty good," said Hamlik upon the conclusion of his high school career.

Also in the 3A meet, Columbia River's Benjamin Grubb was fifth in the 200 freestyle and sixth in the 100 freestyle.

Calwell, a junior for Camas, also had personal-best times and school records in placing second in the Class 4A 200 individual medley and 100 breaststroke.

Calwell finished the 200 IM in 1:54.23, placing behind Curtis' Brian Woodbury, who blazed through the competition with an automatic All-American time of 1:50.31.

"It was a really fun race," Calwell said. "It was fun chasing All-Americans like that, and it was great to place like everybody else. It made the hard work worth it."

Callwell also finished with a personal best in the 100 breaststroke (58.50 seconds) and had a personal best split in the 400-yard freestyle relay, helping Camas place ninth in the team standings.

Camas teammate Lucas Ulmer was fourth in the 100 butterfly.

"(Coach) Mike Bemis is awesome, and I'm glad I get to train under him," he said. "I'm really excited for next year, so we can get to that top-five level we've been shooting for."

The Hockinson boys did get to the top-five level in the Class 2A meet.

Hockinson's biggest source of success came in the relays, finishing in second place in the 200 medley relay and in third place in the 400 freestyle relay.

Hockinson brought with them only four swimmers in Saturday's finals in senior Cullyn Newman and juniors Dylan Osborne, William Morris and Jonah Rodewald. All four swimmers competed in two individual races as well as the relays.

"The only thing with the 400 free at the end, I think we were just all super tired and beat from the individual races," Osborne said. "It's a little tiring, but I think we still did good at the end."

Newman placed fourth in the 100 freestyle and 100 backstroke. Rodewald was third in the 200 individual medley and fifth in the 100 breastroke. And Osborne placed fifth in both the 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly.

"We were shooting for fourth place," Newman said. "Still, the meet turned out really great. Much, much better than last year."