Say hello to Northern’s newest golden boy: Max Materne.
He’s sporting two new medals around his neck from OFSAA competitions March 2 and 3 in the 200-metre medley relay and the 100-metre backstroke.
For the Red Knight senior the battle for pool dominance built up like a tsunami of emotion.
“I got a personal best time in the 50-metre backstroke in the 200-metre medley relay,” he said. “Wednesday I just built on what happened Tuesday, using it as motivation.”
Ranked first in Ontario, Materne has been regarded by his two coaches Lynn Simerson and Karen McIntyre as one of the best both in and out of the cement pond.
“He’s my senior captain this year and he’s really led the team 100 percent,” Simerson said. “He’s positive, he gives the kids feedback and he’s extremely talented.”
She shared a small anecdote about Materne’s OFSAA preparations with fellow teammates.
“They said, ‘Can we try breaking one of the records’, and I said ‘Sure’,” Simerson recalled. “Some of those records up there (in Northern) are set by kids who won two golds at OFSAA and they’re pretty strong.
“So I said, ‘Okay, what do you want to do first?’ And they said the 200-metre medley. I was hesitant,” she added. “There’s no way they’re going to break the record, but they did, by two seconds and they blew me away.”
Helping to give Materne a boost during OFSAA in Etobicoke was the pomp surrounding the 2010 Vancouver Games. Though he admitted getting himself to the Summer Games proves a bit of a challenge.
“Since I’m not a club swimmer it’s not really an option,” he said. “If I had started club swimming when I was 13 maybe it would be.
“I would have to do a lot of catch-up to get there.”
Not always swimming laps, Materne likes to run on the pitch during the summer months, but admits traveling to face swimmers from afar is more energizing.
“It’s kind of a chance to compete,” he said. “I just really like competition so it gives me the chance to do that on a bigger scale up in Ontario.
“Soccer doesn’t offer that because I stay in Toronto versus swimming against kids in Thunder Bay and Sudbury.”
After the year is over, one that seems buoyant with an 87 percent average, Materne looks forward to swimming through the sea of freshmen at Queen’s or Western. He plans to continue his fitness pursuits by studying kinesiology.
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