PIAA Class AAA Boys Swimming: HH's Thomas Strikes Gold

Hatboro-Horsham’s Andy Thomas won the gold in the 100 breaststroke, and the Hatters also got gold in the 400 free relay after North Allegheny was disqualified. Photos provided courtesy of Kim Supko. Check back for galleries of all the action...CLICK HERE to go directly to the Swimming galleries.

LEWISBURG - Andy Thomas is no longer just the younger brother of three-time PIAA swimming champion Michael Thomas.

The Hatboro-Horsham junior is now a state champion himself.

Thomas won the 100-yard breaststroke in 55.16 on Sunday at the PIAA Class 3A boys swimming championship at Kinney Natatorium at Bucknell University.

Thomas, seeded second, beat top seed Jason Young of Hershey by a full second.

“I was nervous at the beginning,” Thomas said. “I thought he (Young) had me at the first 50. I thought for sure I was going to lose.

“I really screwed up my start. I broke out extremely early. I guess it was the suit. I didn’t do a (practice) start in the suit and I floated right up, so that wasn’t what I had in mind but it turned out all right.

“I did my best time by a ton so I couldn’t be any happier. Obviously, you can’t complain when you win at states.

“Going right from the breaststroke to the 400 free relay I only had about 15-20 minutes to warm down. I did like a 300, got my award and hopped right back in for the relay. It was kind of crazy. There was a lot going on in a short amount of time so I think adrenaline kept me going.”

The older Thomas is now a sophomore at California.

“I’m starting to fill the shoes a little bit, I guess,” Andy Thomas said. “I’m starting to make a name for myself and stop being Michael Thomas’ little brother and start being Andy Thomas. That’s always a big first step and it always feels good starting to make a name for myself.” 

In a shocker, North Allegheny’s 400 freestyle relay, which appeared to win with a state record of 2:58.00, was disqualified, moving Hatboro-Horsham to the top of the podium.

Thomas, Luke Emig, Stuart Sumner and John Scully touched in 3:04.70 for the victory.

“We got lucky,” Thomas said. “North Allegheny is an absolutely ridiculous team, just awesome. We couldn’t be happier being state champs in the last event of the meet, and we’ll take it. It’s not as good as if you win it yourself, you get deked into it, but we’ll take it.” 

Pennsbury’s Connor Doyle finished third in the 100 breaststroke (56.49).

Doyle swam a 56.49 to lower his own school record in the event.

“I’m definitely happy,” Doyle said. “It was my best time and I’m really proud of it.

“Breaststroke is always a tricky race. My second 25 I feel like I definitely could have done a little better. I lost a little height, but other than that it was a great race. I just feel that all the details came together and I’m proud of my swim. I couldn’t ask for anything more. I gave it my all.”

Will Deitch, Connor Nadel, Matthew Babel and Doyle took 20th in the 400 freestyle relay (3:15.45) to finish off the day for Pennsbury.

Upper Dublin finished third in the 400 freestyle relay. Joe Gewartowski, Matthew Jensen, Kornel Pesti and Alex Flynn touched in 3:07.20.

Flynn was seventh in the 100 freestyle (45.73) and Jake DiMartile was 21st in the 500 freestyle (4:41.64) for the Cardinals.

North Penn tied for fourth with Conestoga in the 400 freestyle relay (3:07.76). Noah Jamieson, Ryan Hartmann, Aidan Daly and Sean Faikish were the foursome.

Daly finished seventh in the 500 freestyle (4:31.23) to reach the podium.

Faikish took ninth in the 500 freestyle (4:33.18), Ryley Fein was 15th in the 100 breaststroke (58.79) and Greyson Campbell took 22nd in the 100 breaststroke (59.62) for the Knights.

Cristian Musterait of Souderton finished sixth in the 100 freestyle (45.70) and teammate Storm Krader was seventh in the 100 backstroke (50.56) to add to the Indians’ medal count.  

T.J. Yaglenski finished 22nd in the 100 backstroke (52.69) and Jake Kramer was 32nd in the 500 freestyle (4:51.89) for Souderton.

Brad Johnson of Central Bucks West finished 10th in the 100 breaststroke (58.60) while brother Dale was 17th in the 100 backstroke (51.87).

Dale Johnson, Evan Washington, Peter Baltes and Brad Johnson were 10th in the 400 freestyle relay (3:11.19).

Central Bucks South’s Dan Han was 18th in the 100 freestyle (47.29).

Greg Roytman of Council Rock South took 18th in the 100 backstroke (52.03).

Trevor Mislan of Central Bucks East finished 26th in the 100 breaststroke (1:00.75).

In the team competition, North Penn is currently in fourth place with 144 points. Hatboro-Horsham is sixth (111), Souderton is seventh (104) and Upper Dublin is 10th (74).  North Allegheny leads with 271 points.

Boys diving has yet to be contested, and will be held Sunday at Bucknell at 7:30 p.m.