Chirafisi captures gold

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MTT News's picture
Rob Reischel
Middleton sophomore Nick Chirafisi finished first in the 200-yard freestyle at the WIAA Division 1 state meet last Saturday./Times-Tribune photo by Mary Langenfeld

WAUKESHA — Nick Chirafisi touched the finish line.

Chirafisi looked up at the scoreboard, then a moment later pumped his fist.

Yes, there was plenty to be excited about.

Chirafisi, a sophomore at Middleton High School, had just finished first in the 200-yard freestyle at the WIAA Division 1 state meet held at Waukesha South High School on Feb. 6.

Chirafisi’s big performance helped the Cardinals finish in 10th place overall. Sun Prairie won the meet with 232.5 points, while Middleton had 92.0.

“Nick continues to impress us year after year,” Middleton coach Danny Lynam said. “Oftentimes after a breakout freshman year some guys will struggle to recreate that their sophomore year. It happens enough that we have a term for it — ‘the sophomore slump.’ Nick blew right through his sophomore year and continued to produce.”

Chirafisi swam the 200-yard freestyle in 1:39.83 seconds and bested runner-up Leo Gandaria — a senior from Greenfield — by more than a second.

Chirafisi also finished fifth in the 500-yard freestyle and helped Middleton’s 400-yard freestyle relay team finish fourth and its 200-yard freestyle relay team place 10th. 

“I credit a lot of it to (Chirafisi’s) intense competitive streak,” Lynam said of Chirafisi. “When he sets his mind on beating an individual or winning an event it is hard to stop him. I think everyone is looking forward to what he is capable of in his career, especially with two more full seasons of training.”

Several other Cardinals had big days at state.

Senior Joe McNerney, senior Alex Starr and sophomore Jack Madoch were all part of the Cardinals’ fifth place 400-yard freestyle relay team. Madoch, junior Blaise Lin and senior Koby Renfert joined Chirafisi on the 200-yard freestyle relay team.

Madoch was also eighth in the 100-yard freestyle and 12th in the 50-yard freestyle

“Jack Madoch had a notable state meet,” Lynam said. “He swam well in his individuals, but truly contributed in a big way to the relays. Jack is also someone who continued to improve after a big freshman year and shows no signs of slowing down.”

Sophomores Theo Wolf and Tyler Choedak were 19th and 20th, respectively, in the 100-yard backstroke. And Middleton’s foursome of Starr, Renfert, Wolf and McNerney were 19th in the 200-yard medley relay.

“It was great to see some of our seniors go out with some fast swims and lifetime bests after such an unusual season,” Lynam said. “Alex Starr was able to dive his senior year at state as well as swim on some relays after putting in a lot of work over the past couple of years. Seniors Joe McNerney and Koby Renfert were also able to show off some of their speed on the relays.”

Middleton was the defending state champions, but after losing a sensational senior class, Lynam knew a repeat wasn’t going to happen. Instead, the Cardinals got terrific swims from everyone they brought to state and left with an impressive 10th place finish.

“We certainly lost a lot of impactful seniors last year, but this gave a lot of guys the opportunity to contribute,” Lynam said. “I was impressed with the intensity and focus we had going into that meet. It was only the second in person meet we had this year. Getting 10th place was great, but I think we were just excited to get there and have as many fast swims as we had.”


WIAA Division 1 state swimming and diving meet

Sun Prairie 232.5, Greenfield 211, Arrowhead 192, Waukesha North 139, Brookfield Central/East 135, Hudson 132, Verona/Mount Horeb 112, Sheboygan North 108, Muskego 105, Middleton 92, D.C. Everest 84, Badger 83, Eau Claire Memorial/North 76, Marquette 73, West Bend West/East 55, Waunakee 53, Homestead 51, Wauwatosa West/East 49, Appleton North/East 47.5, Oak Creek 47, Franklin 37, Neenah 36, Bay Port 33, Racine Case 22, Waukesha South/Catholic Memorial 22, Waukesha West/Mukwonago 22, Kenosha Indian Trail 18, Chippewa Falls/Mcdonell Central 13, Menomonee Falls 13, Stevens Point 10, Appleton West/Kimberly 9, Oregon 6, Janesville Craig 5, Hartford/Slinger 2


200 medley relay — 1. Waukesha North Co-op, 1:32.50; 2. Greenfield Co-op, 1:33.14; 3. Arrowhead, 1:33.49; 4. Brookfield Central/East, 1:34.30; 5. Sun Prairie (Halbach, Werwie, Schluesche, Lodahl), 1:34.54; 6 Muskego, 1:35.77.

200 freestyle — 1. Chirafisi, Middleton, 1:39.83; 2. Gandaria, Greenfield Co-op, 1:40.96; 3. Long, Brookfield Central/East, 1:42.11; 4. Hanson, Hudson, 1:42.44; 5. Mayer, D.C. Everest, 1:43.62; 6. Ridlehoover, Appleton North/East, 1:44.46. 14. Gunnink, Sun Prairie, 1:47.94.

200 IM — 1. Lustig, Greenfield Co-op, 1:50.63; 2. Testin, Homestead, 1:53.25; 3. Johnson, Arrowhead, 1:53.29; 4. Ketterling, Oak Creek, 1:54.16; 5. Slonac, Muskego, 1:54.22; 6. Fitzgerald, West Bend East/West, 1:54.75; 8. Werwie, Sun Prairie, 1:55.36; 9. Schluesche, Sun Prairie, 1:55.97; 18-tie. B. Braatz, 1:59.56.

50 freestyle — 1. Perez, Greenfield Co-op, :19.81(r); 2. Wiegand, Sun Prairie, :19.92(r); 3. Hayon, Sheboygan North, :20.19; 4. Meulemans, Wauwatosa East/West, :20.65; 5. Michalek, Waukesha North Co-op, :20.78; 6. Biwer, Eau Claire Memorial/North, :20.91; 7. E. Braatz, Sun Prairie, :21.10; 14. Lodahl, Sun Prairie, :21.62; 19. Anhalt, :21.84.

100 butterfly — 1. Perez, Greenfield Co-op, :47.27(r); 2. Hayon, Sheboygan North, :47.56; 3. Best, Verona Area/Mount Horeb, :48.89; 4. Kostov, Bay Port, :50.47; 5. Ketterling, Oak Creek, :50.64; 6. Millette, Waukesha North Co-op :50.81. 13. Schluesche, Sun Prairie, :51.47.

100 freestyle — 1. Wiegand, Sun Prairie, :44.08; 2. Meulemans, Wauwatosa East/West, :44.83; 3. Michalek, Waukesha North Co-op, :45.53; 4. Gandaria, Greenfield Co-op, :45.69; 5. Craig, Franklin, :46.22; 6. Biwer, Eau Claire Memorial/North, :46.67; 7. E. Braatz, Sun Prairie, :46.85; 9. Anhalt, Sun Prairie, :47.56; 14-tie. Lodahl, Sun Prairie, :48.16.

500 freestyle — 1. Lustig, Greenfield Co-op, 4:30.22; 2. Hanson, Hudson, 4:37.14; 3. Foti, Waukesha West/Mukwonago, 4:40.90; 3. Ridlehoover, Appleton East/North, 4:40.95; 5. Chirafisi, Middleton, 4:41.17; 6. Fitzgerald, West Bend East/West, 4:42.76. 7. Werwie, Sun Prairie, 4:43.35.

200 freestyle relay — 1. Sun Prairie (E. Braatz, Lodahl, Anhalt, Wiegand), 1:22.69(r); 2. Badger Co-op, 1:24.74; 3. Waukesha North Co-op, 1:25.29; 4. Sheboygan North, 1:26.00; 5. Verona Area/Mount Horeb, 1:26.36; 6. Arrowhead, 1:27.07.

100 backstroke — 1. Long, Brookfield Central/East, :49.89; 2. Fisher, Muskego, :50.05; 3. Braunschweig, Arrowhead, :50.26; 4. Anderson, Muskego, :50.65; 5. Herman, Waukesha North Co-op, :50.76; 6. Kostov, Bay Port, :51.15; 10. Halbach, Sun Prairie, :51.81; 14. Sullivan, Sun Prairie, :53.46; 16. Gunnink, :53.71.

100 breaststroke — 1. Miller, Marquette University, :55.97; 2. Miller, Brookfield Central/East, :56.03; 3. Johnson, Arrowhead, :56.29; 4. Rozeboom, Verona Area/Mount Horeb, :58.13; 5. Hanson, Hudson, :58.21; 6. Patti, Greenfield Co-op, :58.43; 12. B. Braatz, Sun Prairie, 1:00.09.

400 freestyle relay — 1. Greenfield Co-op, 3:04.39; 2. Sun Prairie (E. Braatz, Werwie, Anhalt, Wiegand), 3:06.39; 3. Sheboygan North, 3:08.26; 4. Hudson, 3:12.08; 5. Middleton, 3:12.80; 6. Brookfield Central/East, 3:13.14.



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