Your Prep Sports
IOWA CITY – Forrest Frazier was positive he was prepared for his state swimming meet debut last February.
An accomplished club team swimmer, Frazier told himself he had been to big meets before. He had competed at junior nationals and excelled during the regular season as a freshman.
Frazier was ready for the state’s biggest stage. At least that’s what he thought.
“I was definitely not prepared for the excitement the whole thing brings,” Frazier said of last year’s state meet. “There was definitely a wow factor there last year that I wasn’t prepared for.”
Even with that ‘wow factor’ moment at state Frazier still turned in a state-meet performance nearly any athlete would take.
He posted a pair of top-10 individual finishes highlighted by a third-place performance in the backstroke and helped the City High 200 medley relay team place 10th.
“He has been to those junior national competitions and big meets on the club scene but he has never been to a meet like the high school championship where it’s a little more emotional and he was a freshman last year racing against juniors and seniors,” City High coach Zane Hugo said. “
“It’s a little bit of that unknown factor and that emotional level that he hadn’t been to yet where it feels like everyone is watching you.”
The state tournament last season was a fine ending to an impressive freshman season for Frazier but it wasn’t what he wanted.
“I have to be happy with it just because getting third place is good as a freshman but I am a competitor,” Frazier said. “Just like everybody else in this state we are all going to this meet for one thing and I can’t lie and say that I’m happy leaving the meet with at third-place finish.”
Frazier will make his return to the state meet on Saturday at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center in Iowa City at 12:30 p.m.
For the second year in a row he enters coming off a record-setting regular season and with a pair of top-five individual qualifying marks.
This year Frazier is more prepared than ever.
“I definitely feel like I’m better prepared this year,” Frazier said. “I’m just more confident in my training this year. I feel like everything this season has gone a lot better for me.”
Frazier built on his standout freshman season in impressive fashion this winter.
He won a pair of Mississippi Valley Conference individual titles last month, tying the conference record in the 100 breaststroke.
Frazier followed that up with a pair of first-place finishes at the district meet last week.
Entering the state meet Frazier has the fastest time in the state this season in both the 100 butterfly and 100 breaststroke this season posting both at the district meet last week at Southeast Polk.
“He’s come a long way in a year,” Hugo said. “He has improved his butterfly a lot, he’s a lot stronger and you can see that in his swimming but I think he is just a lot more confident as well and that is the big difference maker.”
Frazier has made the leap from great to elite as a sophomore.
His top time of 50.59 in the 100 butterfly is nearly a full second faster than Matt Peng of Linn-Mar.
“He was a great freshman but he is already improved so much just by being a little more confident with the training,” Hugo said. “It’s been good to have guys be young but now be more experienced.”
Frazier has been even more dominant in the breaststroke where his time of 56.06 is more than a full second and a half faster than Ames senior Dalton Lillibridge and just .37 off the state record set by Sean Osborne of Cedar Falls in 2003.
At a University of Iowa facility Hugo explained as built for fast swimming, Frazier hopes to push for that record on Saturday.
“I feel like my best times are yet to come,” Frazier said. “I’m feeling better than I ever have before so I’m excited that’s for sure.”
Frazier feels more prepared his second time around on the state swim scene but his goals haven’t changed.
He still has the same thing in mind for his second trip, state titles.
Frazier will attempt to become the first City High individual champion since 2011 when Collin McAllister (200 freestyle) and Cameron Herting (500 freestyle) each won titles.
“It’s always the same goals for me,” Frazier said. “I’m a competitor, I love to compete so I have one goal pretty much.”