The Waconia girls’ swimming and diving team has a well deserved week of rest and practice ahead, as the Wildcats prepare for the Section 3A meet next week after a grueling Wright County Conference Championship on Oct. 26 in Hutchinson.
With 254.5 total points, the Wildcats finished sixth of the seven conference teams, besting only Litchfield (207 points). Hutchinson won the WCC title with 463.5 points.
The top WHS 200 medley relay team of sophomores Jessica Stangret and Carolyn Schmieg, and juniors Taylor Beynon and McKinna Kahl finished sixth in 1:57.41. Stangret went on to place seventh in the next event, the 200 freestyle, with a time of 2:06.33. Later in the meet, she would continue her event-dominating ways in the 100 backstroke with a winning time of 1:00.58. Stangret set the Hutchinson pool record in that event last season.
Beynon was fourth in the 200 IM at 2:19.22, while Schmieg was eighth. Schmieg later finished seventh in the 100 backstroke, while Beynon would finished sixth in the 100 breaststroke. Kahl turned in a seventh place time of 26.58 seconds in the 50 free, and later finished eighth in the 100 butterfly.
Stangret, Schmieg, and Kahl then teamed up with eighth grader Kathryn Stangret for a sixth place finish in the 200 free relay (1:47.25).
In the 400 free relay, the team of senior Rachael Sanborn, sophomore Marri Saunders, seventh grader Anneli Paulson, and Beynon finished ninth in 4:08.51.
In diving, senior Nicole Hennen finished third with 303.30 points. Eighth grader Ashley Basile finished 13th.
At the end of the meet, All-Conference awards went to Beynon, Kahl, Schmieg, and Stangret.
The Wildcats will bring a squad of 20 swimmers to the Section 3A meet in Willmar, that begins Nov. 7, including: Basile, Beynon, Hennen, Kahl, Alyssa Kirsch, Emma Lohman, Karissa Ohlsen, Paulson, Mari Rathke, Harley Ruiz, Sanborn, Saunders, Schmieg, Megan Schuler, Cameren Shuster, Kathryn Stangret, Jessica Stangret, Carrie Thom, Andrea Voelker, and Abigail Wessale.
WHS head coach Amy Howard said the team is pleased to send all WCC championship competitors to the section meet. She said the Wildcats’ best chances of a state entry are in the 200 IM, backstroke, potentially a butterfly event, and a relay.
“For our relays, everything would have to come together perfectly, but it has been known to happen!” Howard said.
The Section 3A competition begins at 5 p.m. on Nov. 7 in Willmar. The top 16 finishers in a given event, and all relays, will advance to the finals. Those who place 9th-16th are only eligible to finish up to ninth on finals day, Nov. 9. The diving competition will also be Nov. 9.
To qualify for state, a swimmer must either finish first or second in an event, or meet a predetermined state qualifying time.
Contact Melissa Marohl at [email protected]