Kaneland’s Alef heads to State pool once again
by Mike Slodki
DEKALB—This is becoming a regular February stop for Kaneland senior Grant Alef, the lone swimmer representing the School District.
But leading up to this weekend’s IHSA State swim meet, it’s been anything but regular.
Alef qualified for two events at the St. Charles North Sectional on Saturday, and will head to Evanston, Ill., in the 500 yard freestyle and the 100-yard backstroke. While swimming a solid four minutes, 37.69 seconds in the freestyle, Alef astounded by swimming the 100 yard event in 51.37 seconds, taking the sectional title and producing the second-best time in the state.
“It was a special race,” Alef said, while at the Kishwaukee Family YMCA in DeKalb on Tuesday. “I’ve never won a sectional title before, that would be my first. Taking the pool record down with me was a good one, too. I didn’t know until I got home that it was good for second best in the state.”
With qualifying for the fourth straight year, Alef believes the 2010-11 State gathering holds special significance, it being the final go-around in a high school pool.
“It is my last State meet, and I want to go out with a bang. I want to take all the experience of the last three State meets that I’ve done. I think I’m well prepared for it,” Alef said.
Alef also hopes to take a productive State meet into his university athletics career, having signed a national letter of intent for the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers program in December.
“I’m looking at making this my best one yet.”