DUNLAP — The area’s talented group of young female swimmers were on full display at the Concord Girls Swimming and Diving Sectional as five freshman and a sophomore won titles.
But when it came time to determine a team champion, Wawasee junior Breanna Robinson — a relative veteran — kick-started the Warriors to their first sectional title since 1999.
Wawasee posted 410 points on Saturday, Feb. 8, beating defending champion Northridge by 40. Concord posted a solid third place finish with 313 points, while Goshen was fourth with 308. The sectional champions, along with any swimmers or relay teams that meet the state standard, advanced to next week’s IHSAA state finals at the IUPUI Natatoium in Indianapolis.
After the first five events, Wawasee was in third place, 35 points behind Northridge. But then again, Robinson had yet to even dip her feet in the water.
"We knew we are a late-meet team, so if we were still close after diving (the fifth event), that we had a good shot at winning,’’ Warrior coach Julie Robinson said. "Concord and Northridge were each strong in the diving, but I knew we had some strength coming up.’’
Breanna Robinson, Julie’s daughter, put the hammer down in the very next event, posting a time of 54.60 in the 100-yard butterfly to get the Wawasee express going.
After Warrior sophomore Kayla Hershberer finished second to Goshen freshmen Meagan Ronci in the 100 free, Wawasee had climbed into a tie with Northridge for the lead.
The unbeaten Warriors then all but put the meet away in the next three events, as freshman Paige Miller (500 free), the 200 free relay team and then Breanna Robinson (100 backstroke) each posted wins to give their team a commanding lead.
"This is just a great feeling,’’ Julie Robinson said. "I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished, for the team, the school and the community. I hope there are a lot of younger kids out there who will be more interested in swimming and some of the life lessons it can teach.’’
The only other upperclassmen to win an event was Concord’s Ashley Schrock, who set a meet record of 1:06.25 in the 100 breaststroke. This is the third straight sectional title and trip to the finals for Schrock.
Earlier in the meet, Schrock was a victim of the youth movement in the area, as Miller set a meet and pool record of 2:06.36 to win the 200 IM over Schrock. However, Schrock’s time of 2:07.36 qualified her for the finals.
Speaking of records, Breanna Robinson shattered one set by her sister Brittany in the 100 backstroke. Breanna’s time of 54.65 smashed Brittney’s record set two years ago of 56.17. Brittany Robinson was the state runner-up that season.
In addition to their individual wins, Miller and Breanna Robinson each were members of Wawasee’s 200 and 400 meter relay champions.
"Breanna and Paige were solid in the preliminaries on Thursday, but really they were doing just enough to make sure they were in the finals,’’ Julie Robinson admitted. "Paige cut 19 seconds off her time in the 500 from Thursday, but that had a lot to do with focus and making sure she was ready to compete. I thought she did a great job in controlling her nerves and getting us two big wins.’’
Northridge coach Joe Keller would have loved to have won another sectional title, but his pride in the Raiders’ second place finish was very evident.
"Other than maybe my first year or so at Northridge, I’ve never had a team in 23 years improve as much as this team did,’’ Keller said. "Early in the season, I wasn’t sure if we could line up right or field a lineup, let alone contend for a sectional win. So for us to be here today is a great accomplishment.’’
The Raiders’ had titles from freshman Katie Hughes in the 200 free and sophomore Sydney Boyer in the 50 free.Northridge’s 200 and 400 freestyle teams also posted times that have them advancing to the state meet.
Concord freshman Lauren Boone won the diving competition with a pool record of 466.60 points. Boone’s win was especially impressive when you consider the next seven finishers were seniors.
Boone’s score broke the oldest sectional record on the books, as she topped the mark set by Wawasee’s Dawn Firestone in 1990. The oldest record now is a 1:50.04 mark in the 200 free set by former Olympian Lindsay Benko in 1993.
The top four divers _ Boone, Jenna Denlinger (Northridge), Alexandria Roskos (Elkhart Memorial) and Emily Yoder (Goshen) —_ advance to the Penn Regional on Tuesday, Feb. 11. The top eight finishers at Penn will go to the state finals.
Team Scores: Wawasee 410, Northridge 370, Concord 313, Goshen 308, Elkhart Memorial 223, Elkhart Central 197, East Noble 174, Angola 74, NorthWood 72, DeKalb 42, Westview 5.
Summary of Events
200 medley relay — Concord (Mariah DeFreese, Ashley Schrock, PEyton Miller, McKenzie Wright) 1:51.87, Goshen 1:52.83, Wawasee 1:54.00, East Noble 1:57.92, Northridge 1:59.14, Memorial 2:02.26, Central 2:05.49, Angola 2:10.70.
200 freestyle — Katie Hughes (Nr) 1:52.83, Meagan Ronci (G) 2:54.21, Tessa Peter (Nr) 1:58.39, Heather Ronci (G) 2:04.95, Rachel Enright (C) 2:05.57, Anna Park (W) 2:07.45, Miranda Vancoppenoelle (Nr) 2:10.26. Peyton Miller (C).
200 individual medley — Paige Miller (W) 2:06.36,(broke meet record of 2:07.31 set by Cathy Lundlin of Wawasee in 1994; broke pool record of 2:06.55 set by Plymouth’s Kenzie Miller in 2010) #Ashley Schrock (C) 2:07.98, August Hartzell (Nr) 2:14.21, Shelby Adams (W) 2:16.25, Kimberly Rezutko (M) 2:21.07, Kari Guthrie (EN) 2:21.08, Caroline Oakley (EC) 2:22.35, Emma Hussey (G) 2:23.25.
50 freestyle — Sydney Boyer (Nr) 24.97, Mariah DeFreese (C) 25.08, McKenzie Wright (C) 25.25, Ally BAiley (M) 25.34, Sydney Shuff (C) 25.39, Kendra Miller (W) 25.53, Mikala Mawhorter (W) 25.70, Hannah Miers (EC) 25.78.
Diving — Lauren Boone (C) 466.60 (broke pool record of 433.30 set by Dawn Firestone of Wawasee in 1990), Jenna Denlinger (Nr) 380.70, Alexandria Roskos (M) 375.80, Emily Yoder (G) 371.25, Megan Rody (M) 346.85, Kate Cobb (EC) 341.80, Logan Williams (M) 320.35, Casondra Leas (C) 292.85..
100 butterfly — Breanna Robinson (W) 54.60, Natalie Evans (G) 59.62, August Hartzell (Nr) 1:01.39, Mikala Mawhorter (W) 1:02.24, Kimberly Ruzutko (M) 1:05.51, Jenea Born (G) 1:06.18, Ashley Nichols (EN) 1:08.38, Megan Campbell (Nr) 1:09.26..
100 freestyle — Meagan Ronci (G) 52.36, Kayla Hershberger (W) 54.41, MacKenzye Dafforn-Koebler (EN) 54.70, McKenzie Wright (C) 55.60, Sydney Shuff (C) 55.89, Kendra Miller (W) 56.26, Hannah Miers (EC) 56.73, Olivia Wenger (G) 57.53.
500 freestyle — Paige Miller (W) 5:00.24, #Katie Hughes (Nr) 5:01.33, Tessa Peter (Nr) 5:16.06, Rachel Enright (C) 5:33.89, Jenna Crane (M) 5:35.56, Anna Park (W) 5:35.99, Heather Ronci (G) 5:37.39, Caroline Oakley (EC) 5:41.85.
200 freestyle relay — Wawasee (Kendra Miller, Mikala Mawhorter, Paige Miller, Breanna Robinson) 1:38.23, #Concord 1:39.14, #Northridge 1:39.55, Goshen 1:44.06, East Noble 1:47.03, Elkhart Central 1:47.61, Elkhart Memorial 1:51.21, Angola 1:51.64.
100 backstroke — Breanna Robinson (W) 54.65 (broke meet and pool record of 56.17 set by Wawasee’s Brittany Robinson in 2012), Mariah DeFreese (C) 1:02.61, Sydney Boyer (Nr) 1:02.63, Kayla Hershberger (W) 1:02.65, Emma Hussey (G) 1:04.34, Maddie McBride (W) 1:05.13, Ally Bailey (M) 1:07.34, Anela Helmuth (Nr) 1:07.35..
100 breaststroke — Ashley Schrock (C) 1:06.25 (broke meet record of 1:06.34 set by Whitney Hackman of Northridge in 2005), Kari Guthrie (EN) 1:07.62, Nikki Willey (Nr) 1:10.15, Shelby Adams (W) 1:11.27, Bridgette Yoder (W) 1:11.38, Lynnsey James (G) 1:14.75, Megan Campbell (Nr) 1:14.86, Hannah Winters (W) 1:15.92..
400 freestyle relay — Wawasee (Kendra Miller, Kayla Hershberger, Paige Miller, Breanna Robinson) 3:34.15 (set meet and pool record of 3:34.74 set by Wawasee in 2012), #Northridge 3:37.29, Goshen 3:42.80, Concord 3:51.57, Central 3:52.26, Memorial 3:56.78, East Noble 4:23.10, Angola 4:37.04..
#: Also qualified for state meet.
Next: IHSAA State Swimming and Diving Finals 6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 14 at the IUPUI Natatorium in Indianapolis.