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CBC’s Wehrmann wants to claim success for Cadets’ swim team

Max Wehrmann with CBC’s third place trophy at state in 2018. [Photo courtesy of the athlete]

Max Wehrmann is following in the family tradition of swimming.

The 5-foot-10 Wehrmann, who lives St. Peters, enjoyed a successful freshman season for the CBC Cadets and is looking to build on it this fall as a sophomore.

His older brother, Siler, swam for CBC. His sister, Ellie, is a senior at Incarnate Word Academy and a three-time state champion.

Wehrmann and Ellie also swim for Flyers Aquatic Swim Team with head coach Derek Shipp.

“I swam against my sister,” Wehrmann said. “She was the person who took me to practice every day. Some days we leave our house at 4 a.m. She also pushed me in the water as well. She gives me trouble about her being the only state champion in the family. I hope eventually we will have two state champions in the family.”

Ellie won the in the inaugural Class 1 state championship as a sophomore in the 100 and 200 free. She also won the 100 free as a junior last winter.

Wehrmann helped the Cadets finish a school-best third in the Class 2 meet last season.

He set the school record in 200 freestyle with his state time of 1 minute, 45.59 seconds. At state, Wehrmann was on the 400-free relay team that came in second. He placed 11th overall in 200 and 14th in the 100 back with a time of 54.84.

His results did not surprise CBC coach Sean Dooley.

“[He] trains constantly and really pushes himself to be the top in his events,” Dooley said. “He is a year round swimmer with FAST, and it is definitely an intricate part of being able to come into the fast and short season of high school swimming.”

Wehrmann stresses he wants to do well in swimming and academics.

“I did accomplish what I wanted, which was to final in both of my individual events at state and get a medal at my first state meet,” Wehrmann said. “Although swimming is important it was also important to me to keep my GPA as high as possible while participating in the honors program.

“I was extremely happy with my first state meet as I helped my team get third overall in Class 2, which was the highest CBC had ever placed in the past. Although I was happy for my team, I was stoked that I was able to swim fast and compete against other top swimmers in the area, because of their speed it only helped me swim faster with them.”

Dooley liked what he saw from Wehrmann.

“I loved how strong he swam,” Dooley said. “He really brought his ‘A’ game to the meet and it showed his potential to increase from there.”

Being able to put his name beside an events as the best ever in the school was important to Wehrmann.

“Setting the record in the 200 free as a freshman meant a lot to me,” Wehrmann said. “The record had stood for over 10 years. I would like to set more records, particularly the 500 free, 100 back and as many other records as I can, although breaststroke will most likely not happen since I am not a strong breaststroker.”

Being a year-round swimmer helps Wehrmann continue to improve his times and technique.

“I think swimming for a club team helped me over the summer because I had two practices a day and I swam with the distance group,” Wehrmann said. “I would say I am dedicated to swimming. Most weeks I go to two morning practices, which start at 4:45 a.m. and go to club swimming during the weekend.

“Swimming is important to me because it isn’t just a sport. It also creates a bond between the swimmers on the team. It gives me another family and group of people who I can have fun with.”

Wehrmann has several goals for this season. He wants to qualify for state in as many events as possible.

“I would also like to podium in both individual events to get a medal,” Wehrmann said. “Another thing I would like to accomplish is to help my relay teams to get state qualifying cuts so that more people on our team can go to state.”

This season, Wehrmann has the area’s top time in the 500 free. He also is second in the 200 free and fourth in 200 IM.

“The 200 IM is a new event for him,” Dooley said. “He would like to get every state cut, that way he can mix and match events.”

Currently, Wehrmann has his state-qualifying times in the 200 IM, 200 free and the 500 free. Wehrmann also has helped his team get the state-qualifying cuts in the 200-freestyle relay and the 400-freestyle relay.

“The 500 free was also one of my first state cuts my freshman year,” Wehrmann said. “It was a choice between the 500 free and the 100 back of what to swim at state my freshman year. I ended up going with the 100 back and the 200 free. The 200 IM is a new event for me to swim at high school although I swim every event on my club team.”

The 500 free is a tough event. It’s mentally grueling to swim that distance.

However, Dooley said Wehrmann is up to the challenge of swimming it and doing it well.

“Max is one of the strongest swimmers I’ve coached where he can push his body to hit a pace and hold that pace very consistently for long distances,” Dooley said.

The key to it, Wehrmann said is to stay focused.

“I think that the 500 free is an event that you need to have patience to swim,” Wehrmann said. “During the 500 free you have a lot of time and a lot of laps to swim, and while you are swimming you need to be able to pace yourself and not focus on the people around you. You need to be at your pace and not be distracted by other swimmers.”

With his experience from last season, Wehrmann has stepped to become more of a team leader.

“I think that I am developing into a team leader because while swimming for CBC I try to set a good example for the other swimmers and try to help any new swimmers with their technique,” Whermann said. “Leading my lane at practice also gives me some responsibility as to when I have to go and what we are doing.

“I also try to do any event at the meets so that the other swimmers have a chance to swim events they like to swim.”

Dooley agreed.

“Max loves to push himself and in turn pushes his lane to pick up their game or get out of his way,” Dooley said.

Wehrmann again will be on the water polo team in the spring. He was on the junior varsity squad last year.

“I think that water polo helps the swim team grow,” Wehrmann said. “Most of the swimmers on the team also play water polo. That helps our team bond and grow together, because water polo is a different sport and many people have different talents it helps put everyone on the same playing field and creates a bond between the players.

“My older brother, Siler, also played water polo for four years at CBC. He left behind a legacy for me to try to follow.”

Dooley likes being around Wehrmann.

“Max is a great kid,” Dooley said. “He’s very funny and smart young man. He works hard at all aspects of his life.”

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