Two weeks ago, the West York senior accomplished what he set out to do when he won the 500 freestyle with his time of 4:34.46 at the PIAA Class AA championships. The feat made him the third Bulldog to win a state swim title.
Of course, Strathmeyer also won a state silver medal in the 100 butterfly (51.49), fresh off his double gold performances in those two events at the District 3 and YAIAA championships.
At the YAIAA meet, he broke a 30-year-old league record in the 500 free. After a season like this one, Strathmeyer had to answer more of our questions:
Does the attention from the media and others ever get old?
Yes and no. I said to my mom after states, 'I have had enough publicity for a lifetime. It's good and all, but it's someone else's turn.' I understand it and respect it. It's nice and I love it.
What did you learn over four years of high school swimming?
It's school-oriented. It's all about the team -- and I absolutely love that -- the camaraderie of the team. We had great sportsmanship and great fun doing it.
Let's play word association. How do the words state champion sound?
Oh my gosh, I have been waiting four years for that title. It sounds so good, I absolutely love it. I feel like I can breathe now. That was a big step in my swimming career that has been done.
From the side of the pool at Bucknell, that championship race looked like a perfect swim. Was it?
I think so. I couldn't have gone any faster. In the moment, it was kind of like a movie scene. It went so perfect, the swim, getting the medal, and hugging my coach (Jonathan Hoffman).
Are you are big into inspirational sayings? Do you have a favorite?
Yes. One of my favorite athletes is Michael Jordan, one of his quotes is on my phone: "You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them."
You broke a long-standing YAIAA record at the league meet. How does that feel?
It is an honor, not only to have the state title, but the 30-year-old record. There is always someone better than you, and you can always get better. That is the great thing about swimming.
Who is your idol?
So many people have inspired me in life. I almost don't want to say one person because I don't want to leave other people out. I will say my brother, Brian, my father, my coach.
When are you hoping to make your college decision?
I want to decide after (YMCA) nationals. That was my goal from beginning of the year.
Is it nice to know so many people at your school were cheering you on from afar while you were at states?
I am happy to put West York on map with that state title. My first day back (to school) everyone was congratulating me ... even people I don't even know. It is so cool, it's a great, great feeling.
How is your saxophone playing?
It's going well. I love it. I am band president, in jazz band, in concert band and in marching band. I am so involved with it and love it. Music you can have forever. It could get hard to swim when you get older, you can always have music.
With swimming, music and everything, how do you keep track of all of your activities?
I love being busy. When we have one, two weeks off per year for swimming, I don't know what to do with myself. It has helped with many life lessons with time management.
Have you lived in York County your whole life and, if not, where are you from?
Yes, all the Strathmeyers are in York. We have such a big family. It's cool to have a big family for everyone to be close and support me.
Ever get tired of questions about the (family business) Christmas trees?
Actually no. I think it is quite entertaining. It's cool. (The business) is tradition. I love it.
In a 'Freaky Friday' type move, you switch bodies with someone else. Who would you want to be for a day?
I would have to say (U.S. swimmer) Ryan Lochte. He is such an incredible swimmer with fame and glory, and is the second fastest swimmer in the world. His being second is why I didn't pick Michael Phelps.
Would you rather be the lead singer or the drummer in a band?
Whatever would make the band sound better.