Holy Family Swimmers Advance to State
The Mound Westonka – Holy Family (MWHF) Girls Swim and Dive team was one of 10 teams competing in the Section 3A Championships in Willmar on November 9 and 11. Coach Ben Hanson’s team finished 3rd overall, is section champion in two events, and will send seven swimmers and one diver to the MSHSL State Meet at the University of Minnesota November 16-18.
For high school swim and dive teams, the path to the MSHSL State Tournament begins and ends at the Section Championship meet. This two-day event includes preliminary races on day 1, with the top 16 finishers in each event invited to return for finals races on day 2. Earning a state qualifying time in a finals event race is the sole opportunity to qualify for the State meet.
Hanson pulled together a trio of MSHSL State Tournament qualifying relay teams. With a qualifying time of 1:50.89, the 200 Yard Medley Relay team of Camille Ness (JR), Catherine Dueck (SR, Captain), Jaylen Juras (FR), and Onna Sullivan (JR, Captain) earned 2nd place. The 200 Yard Freestyle Relay finished 3rd (1.41.46), advancing Grace Warden (JR), Sullivan, Annemarie Johnson (JR, Captain) and Ness to the State Tournament. Warden, Johnson, Dueck, and Laney Hendrickson (FR) earned their ticket to State with a 3rd place finish (3.41.89) in the 400-yard Freestyle Relay.
Two MWHF swimmers advanced to the State Tournament in individual events. Dueck in the 200 Yard Individual Medley (2:08.17) and the 100 Yard Breaststroke (1:06.23) and Johnson in the 500 Yard Freestyle (5:20.83) and the 200 Yard Freestyle (1:58.61).
Dueck is Section 3A’s 200 Yard Individual Medley champion and finished the 100 Yard Breaststroke in 2nd place behind Hutchinson’s Madilyn Gehrke, who set a new Section 3A record (1:03.91). Johnson finished 3rd in the 200 Yard Freestyle and, after 20 lengths and more than five minutes of swimming, ended the 500 Yard Freestyle just 0:00:03 behind Orono, finishing the race in 3rd.
An impressive nine MWHF swimmers qualified for Section 3A finals in their individual events, with three others qualifying in one event. Abigail Ries (SR, Captain) finished 12th in the 200 Yard Individual Medley and 15th in the 100 Yard Butterfly. Warden earned 9th place in the 200-yard Freestyle and 7th in the 100-yard Freestyle. Amelia Olson (SO) was 11th in the 200-yard Individual Medley and 15th in the 100-yard Breaststroke. Ness placed 11th in the 50 Yard Freestyle and the 100 Yard Butterfly. Juras finished 7th in the 100 Yard Butterfly and 15th in the 50 Yard Freestyle. Sullivan took 8th in the 100 Yard Backstroke and 10th in the 100 Yard Freestyle. Chella Patterson (FR) finished 12th in the 500 Yard Freestyle and 14th in the 100 Yard Backstroke. Three swimmers made section finals in one individual event. Hendrickson and Charlotte Lake (FR) are both in the 500 Yard Freestyle, and Kayla Quandt (SO) in the 200 Yard Individual Medley.
Diver Erika Johnson (SO) became Section Champion in the diving event by earning 363.50 points for the 20 dives competed over the two days. Johnson, who finished 29 points ahead of the 2nd place finisher, is known for her consistency and continually expanding dive roster. Johnson debuted her new 2.5 difficulty dive at the meet, the highest difficulty completed across the field of divers over the two days. The top four divers advance to the State Meet.
The next meet is the MSHSL State Tournament, University of Minnesota Jean K. Freeman Aquatic Center: November 16-18, 2023.