Stuttgart Piranhas attack at Champs

Seven medals in eight events can be considered a formidable achievement.

But Stuttgart Piranhas swimmer Will Viana was modest about his performance at the European Forces Swim League Championships held Feb. 13-14 at the Nationaal Zwemcentrum de Tongelreep in Eindhoven, Netherlands.

“I’m doing well, but most of the times are not my best,” he said, following a heat in the men’s 17-19 100 backstroke.

Nevertheless, the 18-year-old Viana concluded his EFSL career with five golds and two silvers, and took home the high-point trophy for his age group for the third year in a row. 

The Piranhas team captain took first place in the 50, 100, 200 and 400 freestyle, and 100 butterfly. He finished second in the 100 backstroke and 200 individual medley, and placed fourth in the 100 breaststroke.

With the seven-month season now over, most swimmers are looking forward to taking a break. But not Viana.

“Technically, the season isn’t over for me. It just means fewer morning practices,” he said.

Viana, who started swimming at age 9,  will continue to swim for his German club in Sindelfingen.

His 4×200 freestyle relay team took fourth in the German National Championships last year. “We were hoping for a medal this year. Unfortunately I’ll miss the nationals,” he said.

He’ll miss it because he intends to swim for either the Air Force Academy or West Point, and has to report the week before the meet.

With all Viana’s athletic achievements, he could be considered an icon for the Piranhas. He holds 21 individual EFSL records.

“From the youngest swimmer to his peers, everyone looks up to him. He’s a great guy and a great swimmer,” said Piranhas coach Brian Filler.

The Patch High School senior led his fellow Piranhas in a “phenomenal” performance, according to Filler.

“Almost every single swimmer in almost every single event dropped time, sometimes by as much as 30 seconds,” Filler said. “That’s what we want them to do.”

Notable individual performances included:

Adriel Moran earned a gold in the 11-year-old boy’s 50 backstroke.

Bobby Viana, 16, won  a silver in the 15-16 boy’s 200 freestyle. He tripled in bronze in the 100 and 400 freestyle, and 100 butterfly.

Jun Simmons won silver in the 11 boy’s 50 butterfly and 200 individual medley. He also won bronze in 100 freestyle and 100 IM.

Edward Crandall earned a silver medal in the 10 boy’s 50 breaststroke and a bronze in the 50 backstroke.

Samantha McGonigle,13, earned a pair of bronze medals in the 13-14 girl’s 200 and 400 freestyle.

Kyra Mena took third in the 10 girl’s 50 breaststroke.

Andrew Scougall won a bronze in the 9 boy’s 200 freestyle.

Robby Busbin took bronze in the 12 boy’s 200 freestyle.

Celeste Borras, 15, took home a bronze in the 15-16 girl’s 100 breaststroke.

The Piranhas placed fifth overall (out of 20 teams) in the medal count.