Alek Filipovic led the way to St. Charles North’s second straight state championship
ST. CHARLES – Siba Filipovic doesn’t hide from his opinion that his younger brother, Alek, is a faster swimmer.
Two years apart – Siba is a St. Charles North senior and Alek is a sophomore – the Filipovic brothers are fierce competitors. To Siba, however, Alek is “an absolute beast.”
“He’s extremely fast,” said Siba Filipovic, who will play water polo collegiately at Air Force. “I wish I was as fast as he was. He’s a phenomenal swimmer. He swims with his heart, and he swims with all of his passion that he [has] for the sport.
“I know for sure he’s faster than me,” Siba Filipovic continued. “Even when he was younger, I knew he would be faster than me. I have my own sport that I’m good at [water polo]. He’s good at his sport. I’m just proud of him.”
Alek Filipovic led the way last month as St. Charles North repeated as state swimming champion.
Alek Filipovic captured the 100-yard butterfly in 48.25 seconds and was second in the 50 freestyle in 20.48.
Later, in a critical strategic move, Alek Filipovic gave his spot in the 200 IM to Siba, which proved to be helpful for lineup arrangement purposes down the stretch.
“That says a lot about how he functions as a sophomore and does what was best for the team,” North Stars coach Rob Rooney said at the state meet.
“It really did mean a lot to me knowing that my brother did give up one of his better races for me to be able to make my final,” Siba Filipovic said. “Then, hopefully get higher places for more points for us. Overall, I’m really thankful that Alek did that for me and [was] an amazing brother like he is.”
Alek Filipovic racked up sectional titles in the 100 butterfly (48.98) and 50 free (20.71). In the DuKane Conference meet, he broke a meet and pool record in the 100 butterfly (49.25).
Considering his collective accomplishments, Alek Filipovic is the 2019-20 Kane County Chronicle Swimmer of the Year. It is the second consecutive season a North Stars swimmer has earned the award. Will Myhre earned the honor last year.
As accomplished as Filipovic is in the pool, he still manages those expectations and possible pressure – no matter who is in the water.
“All my coaches always said, ‘They know who you are. Don’t let them beat you and know that they have a chance against you,’” Alek Filipovic said. “That’s always been something that they told me: ‘If you don’t show up, you give them hope. But you don’t want to give them hope.’ Because if you’re going up against me, you know it’s going to have to be a race.”
Already with two state titles under his belt, what’s next for Filipovic to accomplish?
“I think the next test would be getting the other varsity guys and stuff like that to step up because I’ve been there [achieving a state title],” Filipovic said. “Now they have to be there as well [at that level] if we want to do it again. It’s not like it’s just going to come easily.”
Kane County Chronicle All-Area Swim Team
Nate Baxter, St. Charles North, sr.; Leo Czerwinski, St. Charles East, fr. Alek Filipovic, St. Charles North, so.; Siba Filipovic, St. Charles North, sr.; Owen Mruk, St. Charles East, sr.; Joey Scimeca (diving), St. Charles East, sr.; Ty Spillane, Marmion Academy, jr.; Ricky Williams, St. Charles North, sr.; Calvin Windle, St. Charles East, jr.; Sean Yetter, St. Charles East, sr.