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Stars finish strong at state swimming

Posted: November 3, 2012 - 11:39pm
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Photo by Mike Nesper/Chugiak-Eagle River Star Soldotna's Alex Weeks swims to a fifth-place finish in the girls 50 free Saturday at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska Swimming and Diving Championships at Bartlett High.
Photo by Mike Nesper/Chugiak-Eagle River Star Soldotna's Alex Weeks swims to a fifth-place finish in the girls 50 free Saturday at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska Swimming and Diving Championships at Bartlett High.

Every coach tells swimmers to finish strong.

Soldotna High School took that to heart at the state championship in Anchorage on Saturday.

The Stars’ strongest showing at the Bartlett High School pool came in the team’s last event — the 200-yard freestyle relay.

Senior Sawyer Rickman and juniors Daniel McElroy, Dustin Hunter and Chase Corona-Cain took second with a time of 1 minute, 30.54 seconds, behind the Dimond Lynx, who won the event in 1:29.19.

Rickman anchored the relay.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better relay for my senior year,” Rickman said.

“Awww,” chorused the rest of his teammates, who quickly said they loved him, too.

The relay was a best time for the four, who have been swimming it together all season.

“That was one of our main goals,” Corona-Cain said.

Coach Lucas Petersen said he was proud of the team’s finish.

“We ended on the best notes, I think,” Petersen said.

The girls also ended the meet — and their season — with a fast relay.

Juniors Kaitlyn Groleske and Molly Silta and sophomores Megan English and Alex Weeks finished fifth in the 200 freestyle relay, with a time of 1:44.52.

“We wanted to get fourth but it was a really tough race with Palmer,” Silta said.

“And we improved from our last year time,” English added.

The girls said they were more nervous about their relay this year than last year, in part because last year, English and Weeks both had food poisoning. Last year, it was just a matter of finishing.

“I think it was worse this year,” Weeks said.

The Stars also fielded teams in the 200 medley relay. The girls placed sixth, while the guys took fifth. The medley relay teams were largely the same, but Silta was replaced by Rachel Henry.

Relays weren’t the only events where the Stars shined on Saturday.

McElroy, Rickman and Weeks each competed in the finals for individual events.

“Alex finished with a great 100 freestyle,” Petersen said. “I thought Sawyer did an excellent job this meet.”

Weeks and Rickman each took an individual medal as well.

“I got a best time in the 100 and I was really excited,” Weeks said.

That best time was 53.74, good enough for fourth place, Weeks’ highest-ever finish at state.

Rickman’s medal was in the 50 free. He took fourth. In the 100, he placed sixth.

“I did good, I got best times, so I was happy with it,” Rickman said.

McElroy was sixth in the 50 freestyle, while Weeks was fifth in that same event.

The Kenai Peninsula was also represented in finals by competitors from Kenai Central, Seward and Homer.

Homer divers Brian Rowe and Jasmine Lewis placed third and fourth, for the boys and girls 1-meter diving, respectively.

Kardinals diver Cole Gross placed fifth.

And Seward swimmer Olivia Beckham made it to finals in the 100-yard backstroke. She placed eighth, with a time of 1:03.58.

Weeks said the secrets to their strong swims were simple.

“Sleep a lot and drink a ton of water,” she said.

Silta said the girls also tried to memorize an inspirational speech, but didn’t quite get it down. Maybe next year, she said.

Their spirit also helped, the girls said. The Stars showed up to the meet in style.

“The boys did blue Mohawks, so the girls did blue streaks,” Weeks said.

Petersen said a few of the Stars were just seconds — or less — away from the top eight this year, which would have allowed them to compete in finals.

Hunter took ninth in both of his individual events, the 100-yard butterfly and the 200 individual medley. And Groleske just barely missed finals in the 200 freestyle, Petersen said.

Petersen said he hopes the team will come back next year with the fire to get more swimmers into the finals.

“We definitely have the talent to make more of an impact next year,” Petersen said. “Hopefully we come back a little more on fire next year.”

Of 11 competitors at state, nine will return next year, Petersen said.

“Sawyer’s the only state swimmer that we’re losing next year,” he said.

The team is also losing the diver it took to Anchorage. The team’s captains this year were Rickman, Ashley Eby and Joe Rife, all of whom are graduating. Eby and Rife went to state as possible relay swimmers.

Petersen said he’d like to see the team do even better at state next year, but that it was a good meet with which to end the year.

“I thought we had a great year. It was a joy to coach these kids,” Petersen said.

There were a few injuries and other challenges, but the team overcame them.

“They’re still growing and learning,” he said.

All of the nongraduating relay swimmers said they planned to return next year.

“Oh yeah, we’re sticking together,” English said.

One of the boys will need to step up and anchor, and find another teammate for their relay, Petersen said. But he didn’t doubt they could do it.

“I’ll be excited for next year,” Petersen said. “I’m already planning sets and stuff for next year. The kids would say torture. I say fun.”

ASAA/First National Bank Alaska Swimming and Diving State
Championships

on Saturday at Bartlett High

Girls team scores:

1. Kodiak 100; 2. Dimond 79; 3. Ketchikan 78; 4. Juneau 55; 5. Chugiak 50; 6. Palmer 35; 7. West Valley 27; 8. Soldotna 23; 9. Service 19; 9. (tie) Eagle River 19; 11. IDEA 13; 11. (tie) West 13; 13. East 11;. South 8; 15. Thunder Mountain 5; 15. (tie) Homer 5; 15. (tie) Petersburg 5; 18. Anchorage Christian 4; 19. North Pole 3; 20. Seward 1.

Girls individual results:

200 medley relay — 1. Juneau 1:49.00; 2. Dimond 1:49.26; 3. Ketchikan 1:49.69; 4. Chugiak 1:55.15; 5. West Valley 1:58.48; 6. Soldotna 1:59.03; 7. Service 1:59.99.

200 freestyle — 12. J. Lindquist, Kod 1:53.78; 2. J. Wilcox, Dim 1:55.72; 3. T. DeGeorge, West 1:56.93; 4. C. Kelly, Jun 1:57.11; 5. S. Burke, Chu 1:58.93; 6. S. Jones, Kod 1:59.41; 7. M. Stephens, Ket 1:59.74; 8. K. Donnolly, ACS 2:00.79.

200 IM — 1. T. Lindquist, Kod 2:06.63; 2. A. Rohde, Dim 2:11.06; 3. V. Adams, Ser 2:11.12; 4. J. Geekey, ER 2:13.75; 5. K. Klose, Ket 2:14.13; 6. H. Brockman, TM 2:15.17; 7. H. Mertz, Jun 2:15.81; 8. M. Oakley, Dim 2:17.83.

50 freestyle — 1. I. Hughes, Kod 23.65; 2. M. Hood, IDEA 24.59; 3. I. Stephens, Ket 24.72; 4. K. Stark, Pal 24.93; 5. A. Weeks, 24.94; 6. Na. Graham, Pal 24.95; 7. D. Isaak, Jun 25.12; 8. A. Hampton, Dim 25.39.

1-meter dive — 1. K. Friedli, Chu 371.65; 2. S. Hogan, Kod 349.15; 3. J. Stone, ER 328.90; 4. J. Lewis, Hom 288.20; 5. S. Panting, South 282.15; 6. A. Hess, NP 273.85; 7. A. Walker, Ket 268.50; 8. K. Navales, Ket 257.45.

100 butterfly — 1. J. Wilcox, Dim 57.64; 2. C. Kelly, Jun 57.65; 3. M. Hood, IDEA 58.47; 4. J. Cavanaugh, East 59.20; 5. No. Graham, Pal 59.89; 6. S. Dahl, Pet 1:01.18; 7. H. Brockman, TM 1:01.82; 8. V. Wetterhall, WV 1:04.80.

100 freestyle — 1. I. Huges, Kod 50.62; 2. E. Jennings, Chu 52.73; 3. K. Stark, Pal 53.52; 4. A. Weeks, Sol 53.74; 5. E. Sherrill, Ket 54.36; 6. K. Donnolly, ACS 54.93; 7. T. Ramos, Jun 55.61; 8. Na. Graham, Pal 55.85.

500 freestyle — 1. T. Lindquist, Kod 4:57.06; 2. T. DeGeorge, West 5:17.63; 3. M. Stephens, Ket 5:21.36; 4. C. Heaton, WV 5:23.11; 5. K. O’Brien, Ket 5:27.76; 6. K. Mondl, ER 5:31.95; 7. S. Dahlberg, Pet 5:32.98; 8. A. Randall, WV 5:36.80.

200 freestyle relay — 1. Kodiak 1:36.58; 2. Ketchikan 1:40.19; 3. Dimond 1:41.39; 4. Palmer 1:43.55 1:43.55; 5. Soldotna 1:44.52; 6. East 1:45.50; 7. West Valley 1:45.97; 8. Juneau 1:46.51.

100 backstroke — 1. V. Adams, Ser 58.17; 2. J. Lindquist, Kod 58.44; 3. S. Burke, Chu 58.50; 4. A. Rohde, Dim 1:00.12; 5. A. Schoff, South 1:00.36; 6. I. Stephens, Ket 1:00.63; 7. H. Mertz, Jun 1:00.98; 8. O. Beckham, Sew 1:03.58.

100 breaststroke — 1. K. Wray, Dim 1:06.80; 2. D. Isaak, Jun 1:07.20; 3. K. O’Donoghue, WV 1:07.43; 4. K. Standley, Ket 1:08.11; 5. E. Jennings, Chu 1:08.92; 6. K. Klose, Ket 1:09.21; 7. S. Jones, Kod 1:09.34; 8. J. Geskey, ER 1:10.21.

400 freestyle relay — 1. Kodiak 3:31.96; 2. Dimond 3:41.29; 3. Ketchikan 3:41.78; 4. Chugiak 3:42.43; 5. Juneau 3:44.11; 6. Palmer 3:46.59; 7. Eagle River 3:50.55; 8. West Valvley 3:54.87.

Boys team scores:

1. Dimond 131; 2. Sitka 67; 3. Kodiak 49; 4. Thunder Mountain 47; 5. Petersburg 44; 6. South 39.5; 7. West Valley 37; 8. Soldotna 32.5; 9. Ketchikan 20; 10. Service 16; 11. Craig 13; 11. (tie) Juneau 13; 13. Colony 8; 14. North Pole 7; 15. Homer 6; 16. IDEA 5; 16. (tie) Chugiak 5; 16. (tie) East 5; 19. Kenai 4; 20. Eagle River 3.

Boys individual results:

200 medley relay — 1. Sitka 1:39.91; 2. Kodiak 1:41.61; 3. South 1:41.86; 4. Dimond 1:41.99; 5. Soldotna 1:42.03; 6. Thunder Mountain 1:42.19; 7. Service 1:45.17; 8. West Valely 1:48.93.

200 freestyle — 1. J. Ursin, Dim 1:43.67; 2. M. Summers, Dim 1:44.31; 3. M. Smith, Kod 1:45.73; 4. M. Corporon, Ket 1:46.72; 5. V. Kowalski, Pet 1:49.94; 6. A. Kessler, Col 1:50.09; 7. M. Dupree, South 1:50.13; 8. B. Fox-Icarro, ER 1:51.64.

200 IM — 1. L. Belley, Sit 1:55.30; 2. E. Wilcox, Dim 1:57.21; 3. L. Marquis, WV 2:00.68; 4. N. Lincoln, Kod 2:03.61; 5. J. Swanson, Jun 2:04.55; 6. J. Hanni, Dimd 2:06.25; 7. T. O’Donoghue, WV 2:07.05.

50 freestyle — 1. A. Auelbach, Pet 21.87; 2. K. Fox, TM 22.00; 3. B. O’Connor, Craig 22.06; 4. N. Lai, South 22.61; 4. (tie) S. Rickman, Sol 22.61; 6. D. McElroy, Sol 22.90; 7. X. Emil, South 23.00; 8. T. O’Brien, TM 23.24.

1-meter dive — 1. C. Bennett, Dim 514.10; 2. C. Frazier, NP 413.95; 3. B. Rowe, Hom 340.90; 4. M. Seagren, TM 338.50; 5. C. Gross, Ken 325.35; 6. A. Desatoff, Dim 325.25; 7. C. Knutson, South 324.75; 8. S. Fugre, Chu 269.15.

100 butterfly — 1. K. Fox, TM 52.25; 2. E. Wilcox, Dim 52.38; 3. M. Corporon, Ket 53.01; 4. X. Emili, South 53.68; 5. C. Chan, Dim 53.75; 6. R. Miller, Sit 54.54; 7. B. Fox-Icarro, ER 55.08; 8. E. Espe, Chu 55.73.

100 freestyle — 1. A. Aulbach, Pet 47.74; 2. B. O’Connor, Cra 48.89; 3. C. Sundstren-Brenner, Sit 49.20; 4. T. Krasnican, Ser 49.46; 5. S. Combs, Sit 49.72; 6. S. Rickman, Sol 49.76; 7. J. Busch, TM 49.94; 8. D. Schauff, Kod 50.10.

500 freestyle — J. Ursin, Dim 4:40.94; 2. M. Summers, Dim 4:40.98; 3. M. Smith, Kod 4:47.61; 4. J. Davis, IDEA 4:55.48; 5. J. O’Brien, Dim 4:59.24; 6. J. Hanni, Dim 4:59.51; 7. V. Kowalski, Pet 5:00.01; 8. M. Johnson, Ket 5:12.47.

200 freestyle relay — 1. Dimond 1:29.19; 2. Soldotna 1:30.54; 3. Thunder Mountain 1:30.67; 4. West Valley 1:31.59; 5. Petersburg 1:32.17; 6. Kodiak 1:32.26; 7. Sitka 1:33.35; 8. Ketchikan 1:34.58.

100 backstroke — 1. L. Belley, Sit 52.56; 2. C. Chan, Dim 53.99; 3. N. Adams, Ser 55.69; 4. E. Steger, East 56.08; 5. E. Marsh, Pet 56.12; 6. N. Lincoln, Kod 57.01; 7. D. Schauff, Kod 57.48; 8. T. Jones, TM 58.38.

100 breaststroke — 1. J. Swanson, Jun 1:01.50; 2. T. O’Donoghue, WV 1:01.52; 3. J. O’Brien, Dim 1:02.14; 4. A. Kessler, Col 1:02.23; 5. T. O’Brien, TM 1:02.53; 6. E. Espe, Chu 1:03.29; 7. B. James, Kod 1:03.35; 8. T. Krasnican, Ser 1:05.20.

400 freestyle relay — 1. Dimond 3:14.86; 2. Sitka 3:17.56; 3. South 3:19.67; 4. West Valley 3:19.58; 5. Petersburg 3:19.85; 6. Ketchikan 3:28.61; 7. Kodiak 3:32.30.

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