Klem places fifth to pace Wa-Hi at state swim meet

Jonathon Klem places fifth in the 200 IM, while the Blue Devils finish 23rd out of 47 teams.

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FEDERAL WAY - Wa-Hi swimmers placed 23rd out of 47 competing teams at the 4A state competition at the King County Aquatic Center this weekend.

Jonathon Klem led the Blue Devils with a fifth-place finish in the 200 Individual Medley, finishing the race in 1:59.46. He also placed 13th in the 100 butterfly in 55.54.

"Jonathon came in seeded 14th or 15th (in the IM)," Wa-Hi coach Brad Daly said. "He had an amazing swim and maintained fifth from his Friday qualifying. He knocked four seconds off his previous best (2:03.05). His swim was the highlight of the meet for us. His Friday qualifying swim of 1:59.27 was only .5 seconds off the school record."

Klem got into the 100 fly finals on Friday with a 55.81, which was good for the 16th and last qualifying spot for Saturday's finals. Klem turned in a personal record in his Saturday swim and moved up to finish 13th.

Austin Garrett had the other final-day finish for the Blue Devils, swimming the 50 freestyle in 22.97, good for 15th place.

"Austin took a full second off his best (50 free) time in the preliminaries with a 22.78," Daly said. "He didn't have a good turn Saturday, but he was seeded 24th going into the meet (and finished 15th)."

Garrett finished 20th in the 100 freestyle in Friday's preliminaries in 50.84 and did not qualify for Saturday's finals.

And the Blue Devil 200 medley relay team of Klem, Garrett, Josh Bumgarner and Patrick Giedeman finished 18th in the preliminary race Friday in 1:46.42, less than two seconds off from qualifying for the Saturday finals.

"We got off to a great start Friday," Daly said of his relay team's preliminary swim. "It was an awesome performance by these guys. We swam 1:51 at the district meet, and went 1:46 Friday. Never in my wildest dreams did I think we would go five seconds faster.

"All four swam their best," Daly continued of the relay swim. "They just trimmed lots of time off each leg. They went in seeded dead last (24th) and moved up to 18th. It's the way (swimming their best at the end) a coach wants to see the season end. It's huge to see a five-second drop."

Wa-Hi earned 20 points to earn its 23rd place finish. Kamiak High School took home the team championship with 240.5 points. Todd Beamer High School was second with 170.5, and the Columbia Basin Big Nine's Richland Bombers took home the third-place hardware with 158 points.

All of the Blue Devils will return next year.

"I can't think of a better way for the season to end," Daly said. "We're looking forward to the future as all these guys will be back."

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