SPECIALTIES: 200 freestyle; 100 butterfly
COACHES: Eileen and Dan Thurston
ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Class M and open champion in 200-yard freestyle and 100 butterfly. Set a Class M record (1:40.86) in 200 free, won the open with a time of 1:40.31. Set a state and open record (49.34) in 100 fly and won the Class M title with a time of 50:84. Anchor of 200 free relay team that placed sixth (1:35.05) at Class M final. Anchor of 400 free relay that placed 11th (3:31.31) at Class M final.
KLOTZ SAID: “I started off with the main focus to drop a lot of time in my fly and 200 free based on what happened at the end of last year because I had the mindset to work on those two events specifically… There were a lot of setbacks… Stuff just kept going wrong… By the end of the year, I was able to drop some time… I didn’t think I was going to get the record (fly) at that point based on how the season was going. When I got the record, that was a big surprise.”
EILEEN THURSTON SAID: “Dan believed in us and that was awesome. I’m very excited to see where he goes from here. I think he has a long way to go and I think he will balance. He may hit some bumps in the road but he’ll balance it. He has a lot to offer… For as well as he’s done, he’s very humble at heart and a class act… I’m proud to have been a part of his swimming career and it’s been an absolute pleasure.”
DAN THURSTON SAID: “I’m thinking what it’s going to be like not seeing him…looking up at me on his way to the block and I’m going to say, ‘He’s got it in the bag.’ I don’t think I’ve ever once heard him come up with an excuse when it came time to perform. That’s a rare thing.”
UP NEXT: Will swim at Brown next year. “I’m excited about the atmosphere of the school and getting to know some of the other kids on the team.” Is nervous about juggling Ivy League workload and life as a student-athlete. Plans on enjoying the end of high school by swimming with club team, relaxing while keeping up his good grades.
IN 10 YEARS: Depends on what happens with his swimming career after college. Said the sport is tedious but when he takes time off, he doesn’t know exactly what to do with his time. Has scoliosis and the doctor said his swimming helps his back from getting worse. Coaching will depend on how much he misses the sport or if he feels there is something he needs to give to incoming swimmers.
MISCELLANEOUS: Younger brother, Kevin, will swim at Berlin next year. … Spends most of his summer on family’s boat in Mystic. … Grew up around the water and it contributed to interest in swimming. … Volunteeres at overnight sailing camp during summers. … Applied to volunteer at Mystic Aquarium this summer. “I’ll see how that turns out.”
— Matt McDonough