Boys swimming | state preview

Highland's Johnston emerges as one of Indiana's best swimmers

2012-02-22T18:56:00Z 2014-02-26T16:42:22Z Highland's Johnston emerges as one of Indiana's best swimmersBy Matt Douthett Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
February 22, 2012 6:56 pm  • 

HIGHLAND | Looking at Highland senior Adam Johnston's accomplishments this season in the pool may make one think he's been a dominant sprinter for all four years of his high school career.

However, that's simply not the case. Even Johnston himself can only smile and admit that he had never thought his senior year would play out this way.

Johnston simply swam like he was shot out of a cannon at Saturday's Munster Sectional, finishing his 50-yard freestyle in 20.51 seconds, a time which earned him the top seed at Friday's state meet preliminaries by more than a half of a second.

"This is amazing, especially because I never really imagined myself being at this level," he said. "We owe a lot of that to Ryan (Harrington) and Nick (Castillo, Highland's coaches). Both of them have done unbelievable things for us."

In addition to being favored in the 50 free, Johnston, along with teammates Matt Dyer, Nate Postell and Steve Castillo, are favored to win the 200 free relay. Johnston is also seeded second in the 100 free and fifth as a leg of the 400 free relay.

"At the very beginning of the season, no," Johnston said when asked if he thought this season would play out the way it has. "I knew we'd make it down, but I didn't know that we would get this level of being ranked so high. The rankings, obviously, are awesome, but me and the rest of members of the relays aren't really letting it get to our heads because we realize it's going to be an insanely fast race with everything we have. Everything has to be perfect if we want to maintain those rankings."

Johnston's accomplishments this season have drawn interest from colleges, as Purdue, Indiana and Eastern Michigan already have offers on the table.

Harrington has noticed significant improvement in every aspect of Johnston's abilities as a swimmer as this season has progressed.

"The physical aspect as far as what he's done in the weight room, that's great," Harrington said. "The mental part of it is the biggest change, and it's just the little things. He's focused on the little things that are going to make him better. We weren't necessarily at the point where we needed to worry about tenths or hundredths of a second, and now we're at that point."

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