For years, Cedar Creek relied on older swimmers.
The Gwinnett County Swim League team featured some of Parkview High’s most talented athletes, guys like Ricky Lehner and Geoffrey Carter. But one group of youngsters is now the Lilburn team’s core.
A foursome of 10-year-olds — Wesley Carter, Chris Scalzi, Nathaniel Stoffle and Brett Reason — proved that at last weekend’s county meet when they broke two long-standing county records.
Two years ago, the same foursome broke a pair of 8-and-under relay marks. They did it again this summer in the 9- and 10-year-old division, helping Cedar Creek to an eighth-place finish in the team standings.
“After setting records two years ago, they broke one by three seconds, and the records had been around forever, so I knew if they stayed together they had a chance (at more records),” said Cedar Creek head coach David Reason, whose twin brother Jim coaches the GCSL’s Thunderbolts and Duluth High. “I think they wanted to break the records more than I did. I just wanted them to win.”
The four swimmers set the county meet record in the 100-yard medley in 1 minute, 4.00 seconds, topping a previous mark set in 2001. Their other county meet record was 54.08 in the 100 free relay — the old record was set in 2004.
Stoffle was the high-point scorer in the age group, finishing first in the 25 butterfly, the 50 free and the 100 individual medley. Carter was the runner-up in high points after winning the 25 free, placing second in the 50 free and taking third in the 25 breaststroke. Reason and Scalzi also had a trio of top-seven finishes each.
Three other Cedar Creek 9-10 swimmers — Sam Alsobrook, Liam Baldwin and Jash Liu — also contributed heavily in a loaded age group. The club’s 9-10 swimmers scored 374 points by themselves at the county meet, putting the team in second place after the first session.
Leading the charge were four swimmers on two record-breaking relays.
“They’re good buds,” David Reason said of the four relay swimmers. “They’ve been swimming together for five years. They started together as 5-year-olds and they’ve been to county every year they’ve had a chance. When they’ve been together on a relay, they’ve never lost a county relay.”
David Reason, who coaches at Kennesaw Mountain High, has made great strides with Cedar Creek, which has two top-10 finishes in the past three years. He drives daily from Cobb to Gwinnett with his son Brett during the summer swim season.
“We live in Kennesaw but we spend our summers in Lilburn,” David Reason said.