Shelton swim coach Chad Youngquist compares Harrison MacAlevy to a Jesus lizard.
Unfamiliar with that specific type of reptile? It’s the nickname for a basilisk, which has the ability to run across water.
“That’s exactly what he is, only faster,” Youngquist said about his senior star. “Harrison’s style is high tempo and precise. He wants to stay on top of the water. He needs to. He’s giving up about a foot in length to everyone he’s swimming against.”
MacAlevy, at 5-foot-8, stood tall, however, on the award podium after finishing third in the Class 3A 50-yard freestyle finals at the state swimming and diving championships Saturday at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way.
MacAlevy broke his own school record of 21.51 seconds — set just a day before at preliminaries — with a time of 21.41 seconds.
Mercer Island’s Ian Caldwell, the top seed in the event, finished first in an All-America consideration time of 21.00. Interlake’s Michael Lorr, the defending champion, was second, edging MacAlevy by the slimmest of margins with a time of 21.40.
“There’s a lot I could have done differently,” MacAlevy said. “It’s tough to be beaten by one one-hundredth of a second but nice to post my fastest time.”
Much like in the preliminaries, MacAlevy didn’t execute his turn as cleanly as he wanted. He finished fourth a year ago, missing out on third place by two hundredths of a second.
“The 50 (meters) is basically a splash and a turn,” Youngquist said. “The turn was rough, but to be gaining on people after the turn is impressive. Great way to cap his high school career. He wants to swim in college, and I think he still has a lot more in him.”
The Highclimbers had a strong showing in the 1-meter diving event, with junior Jon Netzel finishing third with a total score of 419.35.
Netzel was the points leader after preliminaries, holding a slight advantage over O’Dea sophomore Casey Benson, who eventually won the event with a score of 453.95.
“It was a lot more nerve-wracking today than in preliminaries,” Netzel said. “Yesterday, there was a lot going on and no one was really paying attention. You could just go and dive. We had a lot of eyes on us today.”
Netzel’s teammate Troy Krumpols, also a junior, finished seventh (363.05), while his sophomore brother Zach Netzel was 12th (301.75).
“This gives us a lot of motivation for next year,” said Jon Netzel, whose other brother Luke was also a state participant this season in diving. “It would be cool if we could finish as the top four.”
Bellevue easily won the 3A team title with 406 points, giving the Wolverines their first state championship since 1999. Lakeside of Seattle was a distant second with 154, while Kennedy Catholic finished third with 142. Shelton was 14th out of 33 teams with 59 points.
Lakeside’s Abrahm Devine was named the 3A swimmer of the meet. Devine won the 200 individual medley (1:50.26) and the 100 butterfly (49.95). His time in the 200 IM — an All-America qualifying time — was the third fastest in meet history but failed to break his own meet record of 1:47.60 set in the finals a year ago.
Other dual champions included Kennedy Catholic’s Tommy Thach, who won in the 200 free with an All-America qualifying time of 1:38.47 and the 100 backstroke (51.19) with Caldwell also winning the 100 free (45.80).
North Thurston's Connor Ridgeway placed eighth in the 3A 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:02.19.