Norman North's Even Wagner – Academic Athlete of the Month Sponsored by Republic Bank and Trust

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Written by Justin Hite

Norman North senior Even Wagner took home individual gold and bronze medals from last year’s state meet – a rare medal sweep of his personal events. But it was two leftover points from last year’s OSSAA 6-A championship meet that have left him motivated for this year.

Norman North finished two points behind Jenks for the team title.

“We got cut out of winning the state by two points,” Wagner said. “… We are definitely going to come back strong and beat out the competition.”

Wagner is deeply invested in swimming, competing at both the high school and club levels. He signed to swim for Drexel next year, following a friend who already attends the Philadelphia-based university.

At the state meet, he finished first in the 100 butterfly (51.7) and third in the 200 IM (1:57.66) at last year’s state meet. He also swam on the Timberwolves championship 200 Medley Relay team (1:35.41). His butterfly time was 1.5 seconds faster than his closest competitor as he posted the best first and second lap splits.

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He said that his team has the best butterfly-er in the state this year, and he didn’t mean himself – laughing off that it was bad for his chances of repeating as state title holder. That doesn’t matter as much to Wagner as winning the state championship for his team, and the Timberwolves are already focused on that goal.

“We have a really good team coming in this year,” Wagner said. “… We’ve really worked on trying to get everyone to try their hardest. If we see someone’s technique not doing the right thing, we try to correct it.”

Wagner maintains a 3.92 GPA while taking multiple concurrent classes at the University of Oklahoma. He is interested in Drexel’s Co-Op program has hopes to major in a physical engineering program – electrical, mechanical, etc. He once built a computer as a kid, and he still gets together with his friends often for Ultimate Frisbee games.

Wagner wasn’t always the fastest swimmer, according to his coach Kent Nicholson, who has been coaching Wagner for almost a decade. But as Wagner grew, his speed came with it.

“He’s been a real hard-working kid from the beginning,” Nicholson said. “As he came up, he was not the fastest kid. He was up there. He was solid, but he was not the fastest kid. As he’s gotten older, he’s kind of risen to the top. He’s going to be one of the top butterfliers in the state.”