EVANSTON – Lyons Township sophomore swimmer Weston Credit was all smiles after finishing the 100-yard breaststroke race at the state finals Saturday.
That’s because Credit didn’t expect to make it to Saturday’s finals, so going home with a medal around his neck was a pleasant surprise.
“It was very unexpected,” Credit said. “After my swim [in the preliminaries] I was happy with my time. I was shocked that I made it in the finals. I thought I had no chance to make it.”
Credit swam a time of 59.08 seconds in the preliminaries and was seeded 11th heading into Saturday’s race. He was 12th in the finals, coming in at 59.44 seconds.
He became the first LT swimmer to make it to Saturday, the second day of the state meet, since 2011. Credit had expectations of making it to state at the beginning of the year but didn’t know how fast he would go when he was rested and tapered ahead of sectionals and state.
“State was definitely a goal because before the season, I had gone under the [state-qualifying] time, but I hadn’t gone under a minute,” he said. “Fifty-nine flat is huge. I didn’t think I would be 59 flat.”
Credit, who swims for Lyons Swim Club during the high school offseason, is off to compete at the National Club Swimming Association Junior Nationals in Orlando March 18 to 22. He will be swimming in the breaststroke and relays, as well.
His taste of success at state gives him motivation to push for more the next two years.
“I just felt great in the water [at state],” Credit said. “I just can’t wait for the next two years.”
In addition to Credit, the Lions had five more individuals and a relay swim at the preliminaries. Senior Brendan Weibel was 18th in the 200-yard individual medley and 24th in the 500-yard freestyle.
The rest of the state qualifiers are all expected back next year. Junior Matt Benz was 19th in diving, junior Ben Hewett took 22nd in the 500-yard freestyle, sophomore Chris Phillips placed 37th in the 100-yard breaststroke and freshman Seamus Scotty took 21st in diving.
The 200-yard medley relay of Jack Garrow, Credit, Adam Kline and Matt Linden also took 23rd.