Wilmot’s Emmett Matthews, a Badger co-op swimmer, stamped his second ticket to state last weekend (File Photo/The Report).

By Jason Arndt

When Wilmot Union High School senior Emmett Matthews completed his 200-yard freestyle race at the Feb. 10 WIAA Division 1 boys swimming sectional, he knew his time was enough to qualify for this weekend’s state meet at the Natatorium on the University of Wisconsin campus.

Winning the team sectional hosted by the Kenosha Tremper at the Pleasant Prairie RecPlex was Franklin with 370 points.

Badger placed second with 307 points, 60 points ahead of third place Kenosha Indian Trail.

Meanwhile, for Matthews, who competes for the Badger co-op team, he finished his 200 freestyle race in 1 minutes, 47.74 seconds, better than his mark from last year when he had a 1:48.51.

“I placed high, which was good, so I felt pretty confident,” said Matthews, who placed second in the event. “I beat my time from last year.”

For Matthews, the reigning Southern Lakes Conference Athlete of the Year, it is the second straight year he qualified for the state meet.

As a junior, he admitted to having rattled nerves entering the state meet for the first time, but said he learned from the experience and believes he can do better this time around.

While Matthews qualified as an individual, his 200 freestyle relay team of fellow Wilmot senior Alex Tenhagen along with Alex Laing and Jackson Biller also stamped tickets to the state meet, courtesy of a second place finish.

The team, according to Matthews, remains intact and since last year, he said the squad has a grown closer and developed strong chemistry.

“We have worked hard all season and I feel it has paid off,” said Matthews, whose team finished at 1:31.08.

As he looks ahead to the state meet, joining Wilmot classmate Tenhagen is an ideal way to cap off his Badger co-op swim career.

“I have a lot of respect for Alex, he is one of my best friends,” Matthews said.


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