Swimmers set several records, improve ranking in dual Spencer meet

Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Swimmers prepare for the 400 yard freestyle. / Photo by Nate Shaughnessy

SPENCER-It was a very exciting finish to the regular season for the Tornadoes Swim Team Tuesday night. There were many highlights from a competitive meet.

First of all in the team scoring the team won one and lost one dual. They came up short to Spencer again, but by the smallest margin yet this season. The final score was Storm Lake 35 and Spencer 59. The Tornadoes beat Metro for the first time this season by a score of 51 to 43.

In the individual races the two biggest moments came near the end of the meet, in the last two individual events. First of all in the 100 yard backstroke Destini Oehlertz not only won the race but she annihilated her own record in the event. She has been trying to go a 1:02 in the event for the past two seasons and she did that goal one better and improved her previous best this season of 1:04.78 to 1:01.58. This also catapulted her in the state ranking from tied for 46th place to 15th.

Gracie Meier sets a new personal record in the breast stroke. / Photo by Troy Oehlertz

Excitement over the record for Oehlertz almost caused SL Head Coach Jodi Mongan to fall into the pool. In the next event freshman Gracie Meier had a similar result when she improved her previous best time of 1:15.21 to 1:12.93. She also moved significantly in the state ranking, going from 56th to 27th (there were no reports of Mongan almost falling in the pool again). Another individual highlight was Keely Soellner's 500 yard freestyle swim where she beat her previous record of 5:31.34, improving it to 5:28.75.

Two relays also showed improvement. In the last race of the night, the 400 yard Freestyle Relay team of Kylie Mongan, Joy Bral, Oehlertz and Soellner improved their record from 3:51.26 to 3:50.07, while placing second in the race. The 200 yard Medley Relay team had a new line up Tuesday with Oehlertz, Meier, Emily Beukelman and Bral placing 2nd in a season best time of 1:58.57.

Other top finishes in the varsity races included Meier's 2nd place finish in the 200 yard individual medley, where she improved her time by 3.5 seconds, to finish in 2:30.29. Soellner was second in the 50 yard freestyle in a close race where her time was :25.95. In the 100 yard freestyle race the Tornadoes were second and third with Oehlertz having another great swim in a season best time of :55.29, where her 1.6 second improvement leaped her from 54th in the state to 20th in ranking. Teammate Mongan also had a best time in the event by over half a second in third place at :58.38.

Another third place finish was posted by Beukelman in the 500 yard freestyle event, where she cut 10 seconds from her time to finish in 6:01.15. She had a 4th place finish in her other individual event where she cut two seconds from her time in the 100 yard butterfly, which she finished in 1:06.53. Bral had the other 4th place finish for the team in the 50 yard freestyle where her time was :27.02. The 200 yard Freestyle Relay team of Meier, Maili Todd, Bral and Soellner placed 4th in 1:51.41.

The other point earning swims were all 5th place finishes. In the 200 yard freestyle, Senior, Alex Castillo finished in 2:30.84-her best time in two seasons. Maili Todd's time in the 100 yard breaststroke was 1:22.83 and the other two were relays. The 200 yard Medley Relay team of Mongan, Todd, Marie Hardt and Ashlnn Jarvis finished in 2:12.47 and the 400 yard freestyle relay team was Jarvis, Amber Sanchez, Hardt and Beukelman, who finished in 4:23.05.

Eleven members of the team will now be working hard the rest of this week and then tapering off yardage for next Saturday's Regional meet at Fort Dodge HS at noon where they will attempt to qualify for the State Swim Meet in Marshalltown.

"After tonight's meet the prospects look good for many of those 11 girls to get there," Mongan said.

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