Tag Archive for: Camas Boy’s Swim Team

LONGVIEW, WA — The Camas High Boys Swim team (the 2017 4A State swimming champions) handily defeated RA Long and Mark Morris in their first meet of the season. The fast-moving meet got off to a good start with a win by the Camas 200 Medley Relay team, which included Finn McClone, Jaden Kim, Austin Fogel, and Mark Kim.

Meet Results:

  • Washougal’s Isaiah Ross won the 200 Free, and was followed by Papermaker Freshmen Jack Harris, and Dave Peddie.
  • State Champion and Camas co-captain, Mark Kim, won the 200 IM, and was followed by Papermaker’s Finn McClone and Junha Lee.
  • Jaden Kim won the 50 Free event, and Luke Bales placed second.
  • Jaden Kim also won the 100 Fly, and Fogel placed second.
  • Mark Kim won the 100 Free event, and Zachary Macia placed second.
  • Ross won the 500 Free event, while Peddie placed second.
  • Mark Morris won the 200 Free Relay.
  • McClone won the 100 Back event, and Macia placed second. Fogel won the 100 Breast, while Aaron Lee placed second.
  • And, in the 400 Free Relay, the team of Jaden Kim, Fogel, McClone, and Mark Kim won.

“This was a small dual meet so we just pushed through,” said Mark Kim. “We’re definitely working our hardest at every practice and improving our time, but we are focusing on the bigger meets.”

What’s next?

The boys head to Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA this Saturday for a tougher, more competitive meet.

“It’ll be a 15-hour day,” said McClone. “We leave Camas at 5:30 am this Saturday. It’ll be good to see the competition from that part of the state.”

To learn more, visit www.chs.camas.wednet.edu

Swim Image Gallery

It’s one week into the new school swim season, and the reigning 4A state champion Camas boys swim team is working hard to find a way back to the state awards podium.

“We’re trying to find 2-4 kids to fill the void of two seniors we lost last year,” said Head Coach, Mike Bemis, who himself was honored as Coach of the Year. “We’re trying to fill Jeff’s (Fadlovich) spot and Tom’s (Utas) spot and I’m not sure how many juniors, sophomores, and freshmen we have to do that. Right now, we have the six returning from State, and now we need some others to step up.”

He added it’s very early in the season, with the first regular season meet several weeks away. The boys swim team has had a string of District Championships, and since 2012 they’ve been getting closer each year to clinching the State title, which they finally did in February 2017. They had the right mix of winning individual and relay performances to propel them over the top.

Team Co-captain Mark Kim, who is the reigning 4A State champion in the 200 Free and 500 Free events, looks forward to the journey this season. Senior Finn McClone is the other team captain. He was preparing for the Salem Open meet during interview time.

“The team’s accomplishments last year were really big,” said Kim. “It’s a really big legacy we have to live up to this year, and this being my senior year, it makes me want that State title even more. We have some talented underclassmen that will help us get there.”

This year’s squad is 30 athletes strong, with six seniors, 10 juniors, six sophomores, and eight freshmen. The team is comprised of swimmers from local swim clubs — Columbia River Swim Team (CRST), Lacamas Athletic Club, and Portland Athletic Club (PAC), as well as athletes from Washougal.

“We swim about four miles each day,” said freshman, Dave Peddie, with a big smile. “Morning, night, lunch time.”

To learn more, visit www.chs.camas.wednet.edu


State Champion swimmer, Mark Kim, help lead the Camas Boys Swim team win the State title earlier this year.

Swim Team Image Gallery

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As state champion swimmer and 2017 Camas graduate, Tom Utas, embarks on his college career at the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada, we look back at his high school swimming career, how it took shape, and what it did for his character and those around him.

Last February, Utas won first place in the State 4A 50 Free Swim event (21.07), and was a leader for his Camas swim team that took first place at State — the first time in Camas history. At that same State meet, he added another team record placing third in the 100 Free (46.74). It was a moment he and his team will never forget, and one they spent years preparing.

Leading up to that are multiple District Championship titles, dozens of personal placements, and more recently, Utas reset two Columbia River Swim Team (CRST) team records at the OSI Arena Championships this past summer.  Tom went 24.15 in the 50 Free and 53.34 in the 100 Free. He also swam in the Finals at Future Nationals in August, which shows colleges that a swimmer is up for anything.

“I think swimming taught me to be part of something that allowed me to be a better version of myself,” said Utas. “Competitions pushing my limit to achieve goals I never thought possible, and being part of a team of swimmers and a coaching staff that provides you with the connections to build friendships and trust among peers through training and teamwork. I’m grateful for the opportunities that the sport and my team has given me, and the lesson and work ethic it gave me is what inspires me to continue to swim today, and remember the positive memories the sport gave me.”

Utas, along with his older brother, John, spent four years swimming for Camas, bringing home a large cache of medals and personal, as well as team achievements. He also swam for 10 years with CRST, and was coached by Darlene Hill, and Mike Bemis.

“He’s always ready to race, he has a racing mentality,” said teammate, Max Dolbinin, a 2017 Heritage High graduate. “Especially on the relays, if we need a certain time out of him, we always now he will execute it. Racing against him is always fun because we always push each other to our limits.”



Tom competes in the 50 Free at Districts in 2016.


Utas speaks fondly of his coaches and teammates through the years.

“They always pushed me to excel, and were supportive at every practice, and at every race,” said Utas. “What I’ve enjoyed the most are the friendships with my teammates and coaches.”

The feeling is mutual.

Hill sat down and talked about the history with Utas, and what he’s meant to their team.

“Tom and his brother, John, had been swimming at another club, which had changed their coaching management,” said Hill. “Things didn’t work out there, and so after working with them here, we learned pretty quickly they’re sprinters. Specifically, they’re drop dead sprinters, and can really only do condensed, specific practice sessions. We knew quickly how to work on what they needed to be successful. A true drop dead swimmer can’t do longer events repeatedly.”

Hill said they trained Tom was trained on technique and high focus skills for racing. Those high focus skills include racing off the block, and building up core energy. He focused on these skills at every practice, and it paid off.

“He’d get his center of balance and hold that for a long period of time,” said Hill. “He have me watch and we’d work on that together. You get faster when you focus.”

She said Tom lead the team on how to be a natural swimmer, and because of his achievements, he’s helped make the CRST swim program grow.

“Tom helped carry this,” said Hill. “He’s given so much to the sport, and has encouraged so many other swimmers to excel.”

Bemis agrees.

“He’s been a great competitor for Camas,” said Bemis, who coached him as he presented Camas High School for four years. “He’s been a great leader.”

Utas said he loves the sport, and that being part of such a great program has made him a better person overall.

“I am so grateful for all these experiences,” said Utas. “It’s all been great.”



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A Bright Future for Utas

Utas has just started to swim at the collegiate level for the University of Lethbridge while studying Biochemistry. He’s looking forward to swimming at a higher level, while studying for a promising career.

“He’ll do well at whatever he tries,” said Hill. “We will miss Tom. He’s been a big part of our club.”

To learn more, visit crstwaveriders.org

KELSO — For the second weekend in a row, a Camas High School team has won a District title. Last week, it was Wrestling. This weekend, it was the Camas Boy’s Swim team. And, it wasn’t just a story of wins, it was also a story of old records being smashed. Really old records.

The Papermaker victory, with a final score of 403 points, was a solid effort lead by several freshmen and sophomores, who are doing things that usually happen to juniors and seniors.


The entire team enjoying the moment of victory.



Holding the District Championship Trophy. From left: Daniil Timchenko, Eric Wu, and Noah Macia. Photo by Blake Schnell.


While, the Papermakers won multiple events, one of the best stories of Saturday afternoon at the Kelso High School pool, was sophomore Mark Kim’s victory in the 500 Free event with a time of 4:37.62, breaking a meet record, and a pool record held since 1973. He broke the record by 4 seconds. In swim speak, my friends, that’s jaw dropping.

“It feels great,” said Kim, who had little time to savor his victory. He needed to move onto his next event, the 200 Free Relay. His teammates say he just gets the job done, day in and day out. He loves what he does.

“Everybody is excited and happy,” said Kim. “We’ve had a lot of great swims today.”



Mark Kim savoring his victory in the 500 Free, as he broke a record that was made in 1973. Photo by Blake Schnell.

Setting the tone early

Earlier in the meet, Kim won the 200 Free (1:44.93). And, the tone of the meet was set at the beginning when Papermakers Eric Wu, Finn McClone, Chris Xia, and Austin Fogel won the 200 Medley Relay (1:43.95).

Then Freshman Eric Wu won the 200 IM (1:57.07).



Tom Utas entering the pool during one of the events. Photo by Blake Schnell.


“This is just surreal what’s happened today,” said Wu. “Countless years of practice with club swimming (at Lacamas Swim and Sport) have resulted in such a successful day. I look forward to State, and will try to make it to Finals.”

In the 50 Free, Max Dolbinin, of Heritage, won the event (21.64). Papermaker Tom Utas placed second (22.36).

Union’s Andrew Chang bested everyone in the 100 Fly (53.61), and Max Dolbinin blew everyone away in the 100 Free, setting a new meet record (47.83).

Camas again returned to the No. 1 spot in the 200 Free Relay with Luke Albert, Eric Wu, Mark Kim, and Tom Utas, delivering a time of 1:31.85.

Finn McClone won the 100 Back (55.11) and Jeff Fadlovich placed second (56.17).

“It’s been a great meet,” said Fadlovich. “I got a PR (personal record) and the team overall did very well.”

Wu delivered another first place finish in the 100 Breast (1:01.49), followed by Christ Joa, of Mountain View (1:06.07).

And, in the final event of the District Championships, Camas won the 400 Free Relay with a time of 3.19.97, setting a new pool and meet record. The team consisted of Luke Albert, Chris Xia, Mark Kim, and Tom Utas.



The 400 Free Relay winners: From left, Chris Xia, Tom Utas, Mark Kim, and Luke Albert. Photo by Blake Schnell.

The top 5 teams were as follows:

  • Camas (403 points)
  • Mountain View (245 points)
  • Union (217 points)
  • Skyview (103 points)
  • Battle Ground (86 points)

All first and second place winners move onto State competition at Federal Way.



Ian Pinch enters the water. Photo by Blake Schnell.



Daniil Timchenko enters the pool. Photo by Blake Schnell.



Luke Albert warms up prior to victory in the 400 Free Relay. Photo by Blake Schnell.





KELSO, WA — These young men made it look easy, but after months of intense preparation and years of conditioning, the Camas Boys Swim team made its mark Saturday and handily won this year’s District swim meet.
Camas gathered at Kelso with fellow 4A (3A schools competed separately against each other at the same meet) competitors and went into the meet with confidence, knowing their hard work would pay off – and it certainly did. Camas won the District title with 414 points, followed by Union with 314 points. Skyview earned 156 points. Evergreen and Heritage High schools also competed in the 4A division.

The Camas High Boys Swim team celebrates their victory.

Left to right: Kasey Calwell, John Utas, Jeff Fadlovich and Lucas Ulmer won the 400 Free Relay at Districts helping propel their team to a victory.

Hanford High School won the 3A division, and Camas coach Mike Bemis was voted Coach of the Year.
Guided by Bemis, the boys came to the meet very PREPARED — both mentally and physically. You can see the unity that exists between swimmers. They cheer each other on and encourage one another to do better. They were prepared mentally. They paid their dues: 140 laps every morning at 5:15 in the cold, dark pool at Lacamas Swim and Sport; eating right (at least most of the time), and having to stay up late to catch up on homework. They had the physical stamina and conditioning that gave them the edge over the competition.
Junior Kasey Calwell, who attends King’s Way Christian, but competes with the Papermakers, in particular had a good meet.
“I swept all four events,” said Calwell. “I feel good. We got it done, and now we have 10 swimmers heading to State. Our goal is to make the Top Three at state.”
That goal had Junior Lucas Ulmer momentarily surprised. As he gathered his thoughts, and reflecting on his personal and team accomplishments, he added: “Yeah, I believe we can do that. We can show State what we got. We worked out butts off to get here today.”
 Camas went into Districts undefeated this year.
The Papermakers made a statement early in the meet with the 200 Yard Medley Relay. Bemis sent in Tom and John Utas, along with Ulmer and Calwell (in that order) and not only did they win the event, but broke a new meet and pool record with a time of 1:39.67.
Tom Utas is a freshman and his brother John, is a junior. Tom was beaming after the win, while keeping an eye of John, who gives each event everything.
Union’s Andrew Chang would win Event  2 – the 200 Yard Free. Chang, a Freshman, commanded the event coming in at 1:50.75, while Papermaker Luke Albert placed second at 1:56.57 (qualifying for State) and Jeff Fadlovich placed third at 1:57.12.
Calwell barely had time to rest until he competed in his second event of the day – the 200 Yard IM. He won the event (1:58.56) and was followed by Union freshman, James Nicorici (2:10.65), and Papermaker Colin Kuhta (2:15.28).
Nicorici qualified for State in this race, as well as the 100 Fly (more on that later) and he’s a bit nervous.
“I’m trying not to think about the negatives when I race at State,” said Nicorici. “The 100 Fly was a close one at Districts and I just have to keep getting better. The 200 IM will be a tough one to get to consolations, but anything is possible if you put your mind to it.”

The top finishers of the 200 IM. Kasey Calwell placed first; James Nicorici, second; Colin Kuhta, third.

John Utas won the 50 Yard Free event (22.56) and it’s amazing to see him go at it.
“John gives each race everything,” said Calwell. “He’s an inspiration.”
Heritage freshman Maksim Dolbinin placed second in the 50 Free (23.29), which qualifies him for State.
Ulmer also won the 100 Fly (55.30) with Nicorici placing second (58.65) narrowly edging Papermaker Max Urbanek (58.66). It was very close.
One of the great highlights of the meet was the UTAS 100 FREE SWEEP. John Utas won the event (49.95) and was followed by younger brother, Tom (51.27). Dolbinin placed third.
Union’s Chang wasn’t done, as he also won the 500 Free (5:02.88). He was followed by Camas freshman Jeff Fadlovich (5:12.47), and both will compete at State this coming weekend. Papermaker Noah Macia placed third in the 500 Free.
Camas won the 200 Yard Free Relay with Xianguang Yan, Tom Utas, Colin Kuhta and Luke Albert, clocking in at 1:35.30. Union’s relay team placed second at 1:38.30.
The Camas 200 Medley Relay team. From left: Xiaguang Yan, Luke Albert,
Tom Utas, and Colin Kuhta.
Ulmer did it again in the 100 Yard Backstroke, handily winning that event with a time of 56.46 seconds. He was followed by fellow Papermaker Nicholas Burton (1:05.97).
In the 100 Yard Breaststroke, Calwell would earn his third medal of the meet, with a time of 1:02.46. Tom Utas placed second at 106.44.
“Tom Utas has done an amazing job and he’s doing it as a freshman,” said Bemis.
Former Papermaker parent, Doug Kabel, agreed. “It’s been fun to see reports on Tom Utas and the solid freshman we have.”
And, in the final event of the day, Camas sent in John Utas, Calwell, Fadlovich and Ulmer to finish business.
The four teens won the 400 Yard Free in style and their 3:21.52 time was a new meet record. The Union team placed second with a time of 3:30.99.
Individual event awards were handed out as the meet progressed. After events concluded the boys received their trophy and posed for multiple photos. State competition begins this Friday at Federal Way, WA. It’s a two-day event and the boys are determined to make a statement.
Tom Utas, left, placed second in the 100 Free, while Maxim Dolbinin, of Union,
placed second. John Utas placed first.

PORTLAND, OR — Swimming is their name, and their at the top of their game. The Camas Boys Swim team pulled off another win Thursday night against David Douglas, winning 93-77 in their second to last meet of the regular season.
They are undefeated this season.
“It was stellar,” said Junior John Utas. “I’m proud of my team for making it this far and my coach for putting up with us and making us stronger.”

Swimming Results

Here’s how the events went Thursday:
200 Medley Relay: Camas won (1:53.09) with Kasey Calwel, Tom Utas, John Utas and Lucas Ulmer.
200 Free: Sam Redwine-Hixon, of David Douglas, won (2:09) with Papermaker Jeff Fadlovich placing second (2:11).
200 Individual Medley: Raymon Pham, or David Douglas placed first (2:27) with Papermaker Max Urbanek placing second (2:32.3)
50 Free:Lucky Le of David Douglas won (25.2) with Papermaker John Utas placing second (25.5) and Kasey Calwell placing third (25.7).
100 Fly:Raymond Miller, of David Douglas, won this event (59.92) and Lucas Ulmer placed second (1:03.02).
100 Free: Lucky Le, of David Douglas, won with a time of 54.4, with Calwell placing second (55.0) and John Utas placing third (55.4).
400 Free:Raymond Miller, of David Douglas, won this event (4:34.5) and Jeff Fadlovich placed second (4:38.8).
200 Free Relay: David Douglas won (1:44.06) with Camas placing second (1:50.28).
100 Back:Lucas Ulmer won (1:04.28) and Same Redwine-Hixon placed second (1:08.1).
100 Breast: Tom Utas won this event (1:11.60) with Raymond Pham placing second (1:13.5).
400 Free Relay: Camas won the last event of the meet with a time of 3:48.2. The four-man team comprised Ulmer, Calwell, John Utas and Fadlovich.
The boys compete again at an invitational at Mark Morris in Longview, WA this Saturday.
The journey continues.


Lucas Ulmer prepares to start the 100 Back.

12-0, and the B-Team is helping them all the way.
That’s the Camas High Boys Swim team’s record so far this season, and as they prepare for their final regular meet this year it’s a good time to reflect on the journey.
These swimmers are giving their all when they practice in the cold water at wee hours of the morning. They’re pushing their bodies to the limit at competitions, and demanding more of themselves each time they jump off the starting block.
And they’re winning and breaking records this season.
When a meet is scored, it’s based on individual and relay times.  We report on the winners of the events, but there’s more to it than that. When a team like Camas wins a meet, it’s based on the top five times for each individual event, and the top three times for each four-man relay event.
Camas, for example, has an A relay team, as well as B and C teams that contribute to the overall score, and their team’s success.
Leaders like Kasey Calwell and Lucas Ulmer have had an amazing season, winning numerous races, along with breaking several records, but they acknowledge and appreciate the strength of the B teams and lesser-experienced swimmers.
“The Freshman and B teams have been amazing this year,” said Calwell, a junior at King’s Way Christian, who swims for Camas. “We couldn’t have been an undefeated team without them. They’re doing a great job.”
Camas had their smallest victory last week against Union, and Calwell wholeheartedly acknowledges the strength of the B teams for pulling them through.
It’s young guns like Jeff Fadlovich, Colin Kuhta, Luke Albert, Kevin Chen, Tom Utas, Noah Macia and Kevin Wang (who just returned to swimming), to name a few, who are excelling this season. Then you have Cade Greseth, who is new to swimming altogether, having a tremendous time.
“It’s been a fun first season for me,” said Greseth. “It’s been a good start. I haven’t met a swimmer I don’t like, at least on our team. I’m a runner, and it’s much more difficult than running. I will swim all four years of high school.”
Wang has made a fun return to the sport after a multi-year hiatus.
“I’m surprised how well I did this season,” Wang said. “I met a lot of new friends and the team is performing extremely well overall. It was hard to get back into it at first, but you just have to pull through. The reward is definitely worth it when you put it all out there during meets. Overall, it’s been a fun season, but it feels like it went by too quickly. It’s a great experience everyone should try out if they like swimming.”
Fadlovich, a freshman who earned a spot on one of the A relay teams, has had an excellent start swimming for Camas.
“This is a great team,” he said. “We practice daily at 5:15 am, and these guys encourage me to do better. They keep me going. I’ve competed in the 500 Free, 200 Free, 100 Backstroke, and the 100 Fly. It’s been fun, and it’s a good challenge to race these events.”
Practices are tough. The boys swim about 140 laps every morning. And freshman Kuhta says it’s not for sissies.
“It’s helped me to be more disciplined,” Kuhta added. “It’s been difficult, but it’s also been pretty fun. I do the 200 IM and 100 Fly. I’ve been on the A 200 Relay. I’ve learned that it’s just hard to compete with the seniors.”
For his part, Kuhta has won several events this season, and is encouraged to keep pushing himself, despite the pain associated with super early and very vigorous practices.
Wang said he’s seen the swimmers improve dramatically as the season has progressed. They work hard during practices in the morning and it shows during swim meets.
Sophomore Noah Macia, agrees.
“We’re getting better, “said Macia. “We are training really hard in practices. We are stepping up the intensity at practices and that’s making the difference in the relays. Right now I’m shooting for a state time.”

Coach Mike Bemis said the B teams are making a huge impact this year to the team’s success.

“It’s a strong bunch, period,” said Bemis. “They take it seriously, and it shows at the competitions. Their times keep improving and I think we’ll do well at our last meet and at Districts. We may even see several of them at State. It’s a great season.”

Noah Macia, right, cheers on Jeff Fadlovich. Lucas Ulmer is seen at left on the starting block.

Camas, WA — The Camas High School Boys Swim Team got off to a rocking start against Kelso Wednesday night to kick off the 2013-14 season, winning the meet with 782 points. Kelso earned 312. Hockinson, which started its own program this year, also competed at the meet.

Camas Junior John Utas had an excellent night in the 50m Free event, earning a time of 25.37, which is a Washington State qualifying time. This means Utas is eligible to compete at the State meet, held in February in Federal Way, WA.

“It’s great to see this happen so early in the season,” said the team’s head coach, Mike Bemis. “I’m proud of John and the team for what they did tonight.”

The 200m Medley Relay team also earned a Washington State qualifying time of 1:53.27. The four-man team consisted of juniors Kasey Calwell, Lucas Ulmer, John Utas, and his younger brother, Tom Utas, a freshman.

Calwell is really pumped up about the new season.

“I’ve been excited about this since just after the High School State championships,” Calwell said. “It’s incredible how strong our freshman class is. We just keep getting stronger. The newcomers are working hard, and they’re competing to get on the A relay team. There’s a fourth spot open, and they’re real competitors.”


Lucas Ulmer


Some standout freshmen include Jeff Fadlovich, Colin Khuta, Luke Albert, and Tom Utas.  There are 34 members on this year’s team.

Fadlovich has been a season club swimmer for Lacamas Swim and Sport Club, and says “our team has really bonded, and we’ve been working really hard.” Tom Utas has been swimming for six years, and Luke Albert has been swimming competitively for four years.”

Team co-captains this year are Joey Wunderlich and Xiaguang Yan. They were voted on as co-captains at the end of last season by their teammates.

“It’s going to be a good group,” added Bemis. “We have a really good strong second relay team, so we should be strong in both relays. The strong freshmen will help us on our road to State this year.”

The team has adjusted to their new daily routine of practicing from 5 am to 6:45 am. The team had to be flexible due to changes at the Lacamas Swim and Sport Club schedule.

Xiaguang Yan finishes an event.
Here’s how the meet went in other events:
  • Calwell won the 200m Free with a time of 2:05.70.
  • Ulmer won the 200m IM with a time of 2:26.43.
  • John Utas won the 100m Buterfly with a time of 1:08.31.
  • Jeff Fadlovich won the 100m Free with a time of 1:00.80. The state qualifying time is 57 seconds.
  • Calwell also won the 400m Free, with a time of 4:27.83.
  • Camas won the 200m Freestyle Relay, with a time of 1:51.55. The relay consisted of Luke Albert, Colin Kuhta, Jeff Fadlovich, and Xiaguang Yan.
  • Ulmer won the 100m Backstroke with a time of 1:05.
  • Tom Utas won the 100m Breastroke with a time of 1:16.41.

And Camas also won the 400m Freestyle Relay, with a time of 3:55.17. The relay team consisted of Calwell, Ulmer, Fadlovich, and John Utas.

The boys compete again this Saturday at Mark Morris.

Lucas Ulmer

Lucas Ulmer


Camas High swimmer John Utas, a junior, made a Washington State qualifying time in the 50 Free event Wednesday night at Lacamas Swim and Sport Club, with a time of 25.37.

It was the first meet of the 2013-14 season, against Kelso. Utas also made a state qualifying time in the 200 medley relay, with teammates Kasey Calwell, Lucas Ulmer, and Tom Utas.

He has been swimming competitively for several years, and enjoys the sport. He’s been battling some health issues lately, which causes him to get winded, but nonetheless, he prevails in a sport that he very much enjoys.

“Our team works really, really hard every single morning of practice,” John said. “I do my best to do my part at each practice and at each swim meet. Sometimes I do get really tired, and need to catch my breath, but I’m managing.”

More details on that event, and others in another article.

To learn more, visit www.chs.camas.wednet.edu

John Utas