Mound Westonka Swim and Dive Takes Second at Conference Meet
With one of the best teams in recent school history, girls will now prepare for Section 3A Tournament next week.
The Mound Westonka-Holy Family swim and dive team competed in the Wright County Conference Campionship Meet at Hutchinson on Oct. 27. Hoping for a perfect ending to an undefeated season, the girls were out-scored by Hutchinson.
The Tigers, still stunned by their only loss at the hands of the White Hawks on Sept. 6, out-swam the rest of the conference to finish first with 548 points. The White Hawks came in second, with a score of 470. Dassel-Cokato was a distant third at 313.
"We went into the meet aggressive and finished better than we were seeded in a lot of events. I was impressed with all of our season bests," said head coach Gretchen Rouse.
Personal records were set by divers Kayla Lindeman, Marilee Saatzer and Emily Minzel, and swimmers Rhiannon Mailey (200 free and 500 free), Sally Stark (200 IM), Clare Simon (50 free and 100 free), Ryann Beyer (50 free), Shea Braden (100 fly), Katie Uhas (100 fly), Brie LaVelle (100 free), Sari Mailey (500 free) and Hannah Daly (100 back).
Season bests were handed in by Paige Beyer (200 free and 100 free), Rose Inglis (200 IM), Hannah Daly (50 free), Erin Haug (100 fly and 100 back), Grace Polusny (500 free) and Sally Stark (100 back).
As testament to the White Hawks depth, the girls broke more conference records and received more All-Conference selections than any other team.
All-Conference selections, based on the top-29 in overall individual ranking, were Mound Westonka senior captains Grace Polusny and Paige Beyer, and Holy Family seniors Mackenzie Braden and Kayla Lindeman; junior captain Maggie Green, and freshmen Clare Simon, Shea Braden and Brie LaVelle.
All-Conference Honorable Mention selections were Mound Westonka's Sari Mailey, Rhiannon Mailey, Marilee Saatzer and Hannah Daly, and Holy Family's Sally Stark.
"As coaches we are so proud of the girls and our season," coach Rouse said. "Last year Mound finished 6th and Holy Family finished 8th. We are much stronger as a combined team and were able to finish second, break three conference records and come away with eight All-Conference selections and five All-Conference honorable mention selections. It was a really exciting meet and although we were hoping to win, a second place finish is definitely something to celebrate."
The junior varsity squad also finished in 2nd place at their conference meet on Oct. 22 at Orono. The girls had 21 out of 33 best times and diving scores.
"We were so happy to see all of the hard work, dedication and time commitments pay off, " said assistant coach Kristyn Kallas.
First-place finishes were turned in by the 200 medley relay team of Lauren Crawford, Liz Mason, Emily Staunton and Kate Rogers; Rogers in the 200 free and 500 free; and Stephanie Begalke in the 200 IM and 100 back.
"The girls are so deserving of their accomplishments, and it is exciting for us as coaches to see their emotions exemplify when they see the scoreboard with their best time," Kallas said. "We know how much effort most of the girls have put into their last weeks at practice and it truly showed."
The Mound Westonka-Holy Family varsity squad now looks forward to the Section 3A Tournament, Nov. 8 and 10 at Hutchinson High School.