A stroke, and one last kick forward. Shaving seconds off the Medley Relay time had proved difficult for Tommy and the team, but his anchor position meant that he was the last person in line, and that his stretch of the race was the most important.
In its 21-22 swim season, with its relay team anchored by Tommy Eichmann, MN beat its prior Medley Relay time by 2.5 seconds.
“We set the Medley Relay record, which was actually something we’ve been working on for a long time. [In my sophomore year], we got within 0.2, and we came within 0.3 the next year,” Eichmann said. “But this year, we smashed it by 2.5 seconds, and that was just one of the greatest moments ever, [being able to say] ‘it took two years to do this.’”
Eichmann, who swam the freestyle to finish off the relay, has tried his hand in many other sports, including cross country, track, and even football.
“I’ve done four sports while I’ve been in highschool,” Eichmann said. “I’ve been the team captain of two of them, [and] I’ve set some records.”
Recently, Eichmann has been going faster than ever and shaving off time in a different field; the track.
“My time as a runner has been pretty short compared to others, because I’ve taken time off for other sports.” Eichmann said. “Running seems to be a break from everything else, but at the same time, it is my favorite sport to do.”
Walter Mertz, who coaches cross country, and is the head coach of track and field ran the 200 in track, like Eichmann does now. Along with Mertz, Coach Jermaine Foster helps to train the competing sprinters.
“I like watching the kids compete, and it’s a lot of fun when they get excited about it, of course. Certainly Tommy is involved in that, and he’s really come along at the end of the year here,” Mertz said.
Along with coaching the whole team, Mertz watches the events, and keeps in mind how his runners, including Eichmann, do every meet.
“His 100 and 200 time, along with his 400 time are all dropping right now, and [in the 200] he is close to making our record board,” Mertz said. “He’s ran a 29.59 at the 200 lately, so he’ll probably make it to State with that.”
But, of course, Mertz and the other track coaches, including Foster, put the runners through training and put them to work on picking up their pace.
“He’s a great leader. It’s been a good, long road with him, and he shows up every day, competes every day,” Foster said. “He was a state qualifier last year, and I think that there’s still more for him to come.”
Foster, being Eichmann’s track coach for the last four years, has had a lot of time to grow, learn, and adapt with Eichmann.
“[Tommy] listens, he’s coachable, and he’s probably one of the more athletic runners that we’ve had come through the building in a while,” Foster said. “Tommy’s a special guy, and he’s got something special coming for him.”
In the last weeks of school, and, coincidentally, his last track season, Eichmann has put thought into his future outside of school.
“[Although] you can go straight to the polic academy right out of high school, I would prefer to get a bachelor’s degree and then go to the police academy,” Eichmann said.
In his last few weeks of Mustang spirit, Eichmann has a lot to think about, in regards to what he is leaving behind.
“I’ve done four sports while I’ve been in high school, I’ve been the team captain of two of them,” Eichmann said. “I’ve helped set some records, and I hope that my legacy would be that people look up to me, and maybe even aspire to be like me.”