WIAA State Girls Swimming & Diving Championships Preview

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Monday, November 7, 2016

WIAA State Girls Swimming & Diving Championships Preview

THE CHAMPIONSHIPS: The 47th Annual Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Girls Swimming and Diving Championships will be held Friday and Saturday, Nov. 11-12, at the Natatorium on the campus of the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wis. Ticket prices for the meet are $6 and $1 for children 6-years old and under. 

MEET INFORMATION: The Division 2 championships will be held Friday, with the Division 1 championships to follow on Saturday. The Division 2 diving competition begins Friday at 2:30 p.m. The swimming finals are scheduled to begin Friday at 6:30 p.m. The Division 1 diving competition is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Saturday, with the swimming events to begin at 3 p.m. The swimming events will run consecutively following the first event's starting time on the respective days. Here is the order of events (all events in yards): 

Order of Events
1. Diving 7. 100 Freestyle
2. 200 Medley Relay 8. 500 Freestyle
3. 200 Freestyle 9. 200 Freestyle Relay
4. 200 Individual Medley 10. 100 Backstroke
5. 50 Freestyle 11. 100 Breaststroke
6. 100 Butterfly 12. 400 Freestyle Relay

MEET LIVE ON NFHSNETWORK.COM:  Every event of the WIAA State Girls Swimming and Diving Championships will be streamed live on the WIAA.TV portal of the NFHS Network on a consumer subscription basis. To purchase a subscription to the live programming for only $9.95 per month, log-on to www.wiaa.tv or www.nfhsnetwork.com and click on the subscription image in the middle of the page. Archived streams of the games will be available on demand on the NFHS Network 72 hours after the tournament without requirement of a subscription. 

LAST YEAR:  Arrowhead retained the title in Division 1 by scoring 301 points, Middleton was a distant second with 211 points. In Division 2, Edgewood captured the crown by scoring 277.5 points.  McFarland finished second with 220 points.  

MEET HISTORY:  The WIAA began girls swimming and diving championships in 1970 and moved to a two-division format in 1992. Madison area schools have dominated the championships through the years. Either Madison West or Madison Memorial won all the championships through 1983 and all but one of the Division 1 titles since the inception of the two-division format in 1992 up until 2002. Overall, Madison West has won 15 titles, and Madison Memorial has won 14. Arrowhead has captured 11 titles, and Shorewood has seven championships.

INDIVIDUAL NOTES-DIVISION 1:  Three individual events and all three relays feature their 2015 champion returning to defend titles.  Senior Tatum Thompkins of Racine Case won the diving competition last year after finishing fifth in 2014. She enters the meet with the third-best qualifying performance at 480. Junior Samantha Nickerson of Homestead owns the top qualifying score at sectionals with a 511.70 after placing third at State last season. Senior Lauren Stigler of Muskego returns, attempting to defend her title in the 100 breaststroke. She also has a third-place finish in 2014 and a ninth-place finish in 2013 on her ledger. Stigler enters the meet with the top qualifying time at sectionals with a 1:03.92. Junior Lillie Hosack of Cedarburg returns to the qualifying field after winning the title in the 200-yard individual medley last season on the heels of a fifth-place finish in 2014. Her time of 2:06.16 ranks fourth among this year’s qualifiers. Senior Lexie DuChene of Kenosha Tremper has the top time with a 2:04.05 after placing seventh last season and 10th in 2014. Hosack is also the top returner in the 100 backstroke after placing third last season. Her sectional qualifying time of 57.60 this season ranks eighth among the qualifiers. The top time coming into the meet belongs to sophomore Katrina Marty of Madison West at 55.33. She placed ninth last season. Marty finished fourth in the 100 butterfly last year, which makes her the highest placing swimmer in the event returning to this year field. She enters competition with the second-fastest qualifying time of 55.79. Freshman Gabriela Pierobon Mays possesses the fastest time at sectionals at 55.44. Junior Abby Cabush of Arrowhead seeks to capture gold in the 200 freestyle after placing runner-up last season and turning in the fastest qualifying time this season with a time of 1:51.53. She also possesses the quickest qualifying time in the 100 freestyle with a time of 51.61 after placing fifth last season. Senior Skylor Fore of Cedarburg is the top returning finisher in 50 and 100 freestyles, placing runner-up in each of those events. This season, she is the fourth-fastest qualifier in the 100 freestyle at 52.15 and the eighth-fastest entry in the 50 freestyle at 24.20. The top seed  in the 50 freestyle belongs to sophomore Grace Bennin of Verona/Mount Horeb, who placed fourth last year, with a qualifying time of 23.51. Senior Rachel Powers of Sun Prairie has the best qualifying time in the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:57.80 and is the top returning participant in the field after placing third the past three years. The Verona/Mount Horeb 200 freestyle relay returns to the event seeking to win its fourth straight title, and the 200 medley relay sets its sights on its second consecutive crown.  The 200 freestyle relay is seeded third with a time of 1:37.14. Middleton possesses the top qualifying time of 1:35.58. The Verona/Mount Horeb medley relay has the fourth swiftest qualifying time at 1:46.01 with Middleton again entering action with the best time of 1:44.86. Middleton also owns the fastest qualifying time in the 400 freestyle relay at 3:27.79. Last year’s champion Cedarburg returns with the second-fastest time of 3:32.01. 

INDIVIDUAL NOTES-DIVISION 2:  Six individual  events and two relays feature last year’s returning champions. Senior Autumn Haebig of Grafton seeks to become the first swimmer in State Meet history to win four titles in the 500 freestyle. She is an overwhelming favorite to do just that with her qualifying time of 4:53.18, which is more than 11 seconds faster than the next closest qualifier. Haebig is also the defending champion in the 100 backstroke. Again, she is the clear favorite to retain the title with her qualifying time of 55:05, which is more than two seconds faster than the next-best qualifier. Senior Ginger Lingard of Edgewood is attempting to become only the third diver in State Meet history to win four State championships. The Division 2 record-holder  enters competition this week as the favorite to win another title with the best qualifying score of 489.35. Sophomore Alexandra Moderski of McFarland returns to defend titles in a pair of events. She won the 50 freestyle last year in State Meet record time as a freshman. She returns with the fastest qualifying time of 23.56, just ahead of the 23.77 turned in by senior Mallory Fox of Grafton and the 24.09 recorded by sophomore Kaitlyn Barth of Edgewood,  placing runner-up and third last year, respectively. Moderski’s time in the 100 freestyle also set the State Meet record. Her qualifying time this season of 51.72 ranks second to Fox, who has qualified with a time of 51.18 after placing second behind Moderski last year. Junior Kelly Rodriguez of Edgewood is the returning champion in the 200 freestyle after placing fourth as a freshman in 2014. She is clearly the fastest qualifier this year with a time of 1:51.03, which is more than five seconds faster than the rest of the field.  Senior Kiah Francis of Rhinelander enters the State meet with the fastest qualifying times and as the top returning finisher from last season in the 100 breaststroke and 200 individual medley. She was the runner-up last year in both those events. She posted a qualifying time of 1:05.34 in the breaststroke and a 2:06.74 in the medley, which figures to make her the favorite to repeat as champion in both those events.  Senior Lauren Bergmann of Edgewood possesses the top seed time in the 100 butterfly at 57.16 after finishing third last season, which is the highest finish of anyone returning to the event this season. She swam to a seventh-place finish in the event in 2014 and was tied for ninth in 2013. The Grafton 200 medley relay seeks its second straight title with the fastest qualifying time of 1:48.33. The Edgewood 200 freestyle relay looks to do the same with the field’s fastest sectional performance of 1:36.76. The Crusaders also have the top incoming time in the 400 freestyle relay at 3:29.61 after placing fourth a year ago.

FOLLOW STATE MEET ON SOCIAL MEDIA: Receive updates of the State Girls Swimming & Diving Championships on the WIAA State Tournament Twitter account @wiaawistate with the hashtag #wiaaswimdive. Also like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram at wiaawi, and add us on Snapchat at wiaawis.

NEED THE QUALIFIERS?: All qualifiers, lane assignments and qualifying standards are available on the girls swimming and diving page of the WIAA website. 

NEED RESULTS?:  Results of the State Tournament are available on the WIAA website at www.wiaawi.org by accessing the girls swimming and diving Tournament Information page at www.wiaawi.org/Sports/GirlsSwimmingDiving.aspx.


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