Making a splash

Laura Bloomenrader, Writer

With half of the season over, the Owatonna Girls Swimming and Diving team is ready to turn heads and make a splash at Big 9 and the Section Tournament. The team currently sits 1-4 with only three meets left to prove themselves as individual swimmers and a team. Their only victory came from a thrilling meet against Mankato East. The team started off slow, not winning an event until diving. Freshman Allison Ann turned the momentum of the meet when she finished first in diving with 175.1 points. Top efforts from the Huskies include senior captain Lydia Anez’s 200 yard medley relay, the 50 yard freestyle, the 200 yard freestyle relay and the 100 yard backstroke. Anez dominated the 100 yard backstroke finishing with a time of 1:11.15. The Huskies clinched the victory by finishing second and third in the 400 freestyle relay which was the final event.

Two weeks later, the team was back at the Minnesota State University- Mankato pool to face the talented Mankato West team. Despite losing some athletes to illness and injury, the Huskies still managed to have fun despite the  95-80 score. The divers finished strong placing second, third and fourth. Anez said, “West is always a talented swim team. We had a lot of girls out with injuries and being sick, but we still held on and raced well against a very strong team.” Anez had a great night when she won the 100 yard freestyle while setting a personal best with a time of 58.81 and swam another personal best in the 50 yard freestyle.

Big 9 and Sections are just around the corner, and Head Coach Isaiah Fuller said, “Right now, we are focusing on getting as much (physically) from the girls in practice as we can. Turning the strength gains into both power and speed. We only have a few more weeks of this before we enter the taper phase of the season.” Although state cuts are extremely fast, school records are well within reach for some of the girls. The Big 9 Conference meet is at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 31, at St. Thomas University and Section Preliminaries are on Wednesday, Nov. 11, at a Shakopee High School.