Versatility is the hallmark of swimmer success in the pool.
Most swimmers specialize in an event or two and the races are usually very similar. In any given Warrior meet, Ewing often swims different races and strokes. He usually wins.
“He swims the 200 (yard) freestyle, the 200 IM (individual medley) and the 100 back,” said. Ewing has also competed in the 500 freestyle, 200 butterfly and 400 individual medley. “It makes him more marketable at the college level,” Sullivan added referring to the longer collegiate distances.
When it comes to college, Ewing’s future is set with the decision in his hands. He has been accepted as a student and swimmer to Kalamazoo College in Michigan and Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington. The choice is his.
Ewing, who began swimming at 5 and has been racing competitively since he was 7, credits his versatility to the training he received as a youngster in the same Deerfield High School pool where he now stars.
Ewing Credits Coho
“It started with ,” Ewing said. “You start out when you’re young doing all four strokes. It helped me get strong in all.” His work ethic played a major role in his development as well.
As Ewing has trained as a competitive swimmer for more than 10 years, he has pushed himself relentlessly in training to swim a little faster and a little longer each day.
“In practice you have to make every set count. Swimming all the strokes in the IM builds up a high tolerance for the longer distances,” Ewing said. “My 200 time is relatively faster than my 100 time,” he added explaining the longer he swims the better his overall pace.
Ewing’s success in different strokes and distances gives him the opportunity to plan strategically for the upcoming sectional competition Feb. 18 at Glenbrook North, the State Meet Feb. 24 and 25 in Evanston and the junior nationals March 20 through 24 in Orlando.
The luxury of being able to pick and choose which events to enter is especially helpful to Ewing because he is on the cusp of attaining the qualifying standards necessary for the state and national events.
Ewing, Sullivan Plan for State Meet
Sullivan and Ewing expect to narrow his choices to the 200 freestyle, 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke by the time they are required to submit sectional entries. “We’ll see where his times are and where the competition is to give him the best chance (of reaching the final 12 to earn a medal),” Sullivan said.
Ewing is limited to two individual events at the State Meet but can swim in up to six at nationals. Once he makes the standard for one of the events at the junior nationals there is a second tier qualifying time for the other events, he explained. The qualifying times for the State Finals are rigid.
Though it is most likely he will swim the national qualifying time at the Illinois State Meet, Ewing can swim attain the goal at either the Sectional or State Meets. “I’ll start resting for Sectional but will fully taper for State,” he said explaining he will be physically prepared to log his fastest time Feb. 25.
A year ago Ewing made his first trip to the State Finals. He is more prepared now. “When you get to State it is very overwhelming,” Sullivan said. “He had to learn and grow from it.”
Ewing agreed with his coach’s assessment of the 2011 experience. “You are there with all those fast swimmers and wonder if you belong,” Ewing said. “Now I know I can swim with these guys.”