Cony High School sophomore Noah Aube has only been swimming competitively for three years, but it didn’t take coach Jon Millett long to figure out he had a prodigy on his hands.
“He’s probably the best I’ve had at this age,” said Millett, who just completed his 17th season as head coach.
Aube broke the school record in the 500-yard freestyle in his first attempt and has continued to improve, also setting a school record in the 200 freestyle. He won both events this season at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference’s Class A meet and went on to finish third in the 200 and fourth in the 500 at the state meet.
For his efforts, Aube has been named Kennebec Journal Boys Swimmer of the Year. Also considered was Monmouth Academy’s Joe Manduca, who trains with Aube and the Rams.
Aube played football and baseball as a youngster, but after getting done with those sports, looked for something unique. That’s when he found swimming.
“It was different from anything I’ve ever done,” he said. “The team dynamic was really good. There’s a lot of self motivation in it and the competition is good.”
Aube feels better suited to the distance events, although the 200 is much more of a sprint than the 500.
“He’s got an amazing cardiovascular system,” Millett said.
After swimming in a meet this season while battling the flu, Aube told teammate Anne Guadalupi that he felt tired for the first time.
“I told him that’s how everyone feels after a race,” Guadalupi said. “I don’t think he gets tired like the rest of us do.”
Millett said Aube’s “off events” showed great improvement this season, particularly his butterfly and backstroke. The Cony coach believes Aube could have placed in the state meet in the individual medley had he swum that event.
Aube competed in the USA championships last weekend at Bowdoin College in his final meet of the year. He’ll run track this spring although he admits “I’m not really that good.”
He swims about an hour a day during the summer and Millett would like to see him hit the weights in an effort to put more muscle on his 6-foot-2, 155-pound frame. Aube agrees.
“I feel like with more strength it would work well with my endurance,” he said.
Millett praised Aube for his work ethic and his attention to the little things. He said there’s improvement to be made in some of the technical aspects of the sport, but likes the fact Aube hasn’t been swimming for a long time and already has experienced success on the state level.
“He’s got a lot less mileage on his body,” Millett said. “He’s less likely to burn out.”