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Lindbergh senior nears swimming's 'iron man'
With three meets left to go this season, Lindbergh senior Andrew Franco-Munoz is poised to do something only one other Eagles swimmer has done in the past 20 years: he’s about to qualify for every single individual event at this year’s state meet.
Known in swimming as the “iron man,” qualifying for every stroke and every distance is a feat that coach Roger Miron said shows a versatility that most swimmers just can’t muster.
“It’s a difficult feat,” Miron said Tuesday.
At Tuesday’s meet, Franco-Munoz, who is primarily a 100-yard butterfly and 50-yard freestyle sprinter, won the 500-yard freestyle event with a good enough time to qualify for the state meet.
Now all that’s left is the 100-yard breast stroke and both coach and swimmer are convinced he can get the qualifying time before the end of the season to complete the iron man.
Franco-Munoz, 18, has been swimming since he was 8 years old, first with the Chinook club and then with King County Aquatics. He has been a standout for Lindbergh since first hitting the water for the Eagles as a freshman.
But this year, he says he is even “surprising myself.”
“I’ve been dropping so much time this year,” he said.
Franco-Munoz attributes the change to paying closer attention to what his coach is telling him during practices and making sure to give 100 percent.
“In practice I’ve been doing a lot better,” he said, adding that some additional time in the weight room this off season helped him get stronger than he’s ever been.
“Andrew right now is swimming with a purpose,” Miron said of the two-time 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly district champion. “Being his senior year, he wants to go out with a bang.”
According to Miron, Franco-Munoz had some eligibility issues that kept him from competing the postseason last year. The coach said he took responsibility, apologized to his teammates and vowed to be better this season.
“He hasn’t disappointed one bit,” Miron said. “He’s swimming almost angry. His goal is to break records.”
Miron said Franco-Munoz came into the season in great shape and has shown great determination in practices and meets.
Franco-Munoz, who said he does not plan to swim at college where he plans to go pre-law, credits his coach with helping him drop time and offers simple advice to his younger teammates on how to improve their times.
“Listen to Roger,” he said. “He knows what he’s doing.”
With three meets left, Miron said he fully expects Franco-Munoz to qualify in the breaststroke as well, but the swimmer himself already has his sites set on bigger goals.
“I’m just really looking forward to states,” he said.