January 17, 2021
Locked in the moment, Mark Hribar didn’t have much chance to enjoy what was transpiring Jan. 17 during the Western Reserve Conference meet.
Don’t feel too badly for the Madison senior, though, because the resonance of his 4-for-4 day will carry for a while beyond a memorable afternoon at SPIRE.
Hribar was electric in a sprint double, sweeping 50-yard freestyle and 100 free and turning in standout splits on the Blue Streaks’ winning 200 medley and 200 free relays.
Albeit challenging to pick one highlight among four, it may have been 100 free. Hribar hit the wall with a sterling time of 48.84 seconds, marking a steep 2.56 drop overall from last year at the Division I Cleveland State District, and it’s the fastest News-Herald coverage area time in the event this winter.
A 25.17 closing 50 was good for a 1.64 drop alone.
“It can only get better,” Hribar said. “We had a meet (Jan. 13), and this was our second meet today. If I PRed this much, I can go faster than that.
“I’m going to say (I found the time cut) in my breaths. I like to go crazy with my breathing after I get past the first 50. So I really made an effort to try really hard. And my district swim last year, my sectional time was actually faster (a 50.91 vs. a 51.40). I didn’t do as well at district as I did at sectional, so I just wanted to drop that.
“I wanted sub-50. I got a 48, and I can’t be happier than that.”
His 50 free work was exemplary as well, with a 22.18 individually, a .68 drop from district a year ago, and he anchored the winning 200 free relay with a 21.72. He could sense it was going to be a good day with a 24.32 butterfly split as the Blue Streaks took 200 medley relay in 1:49.36, Madison’s first league meet title in that event on the boys side in school history.
“That medley is everything,” Hribar said. “If you do good on the medley, you can ride the medley all the way through.”
Speaking of riding waves, Kenston’s Leilah Shafer enjoyed one with a brilliant sprint double in her own right.
The Bombers’ senior took 50 free with a 25.06, a .06 drop from when she was 10th at the D-II CSU District last winter.