Spurred by Alia Malella and Gwendolyn Roley, the Sehome girls’ swim team turned in a strong showing during the preliminaries of the Class 2A Northwest District Championships on Friday, Nov. 7, at Fidalgo Pool in Anacortes.
Malella turned in the top qualifying marks in the 500 freestyle (5 minutes, 37.17 seconds) and the 100 backstroke (1:03.45) and joined with Hannah Holmgren, McKenna Sakamoto and Sophie Grambo to earn the No. 1 seed in the 200 medley relay. Roley, meanwhile had the fastest time in the 200 freestyle (2:02.02) and also played a big role for the Mariners’ freestyle relays.
“We’re very happy with where we ended up,” Sehome coach Don Helling said in a phone interview. “We had a couple of No. 1 seeds and a lot of people that dropped some time. We’re definitely happy with where how we swam.”
Squalicum’s Yanie Le also was the top qualifier in the 200 individual medley (2:19.90) and the 100 breaststroke (1:10.20).
In addition to the the top seeds, Helling also was pleased that Sehome got three swimmers qualify for the championship finals in the 100 freestyle, 100 backstroke and 200 freestyle.
“That doesn’t happen very often,” Helling said.
Joining Roley in the top six for the 200 freestyle were teammates Ellie Poehlman and Ava Baumgarten, and joining Malella in the 100 backstroke final will be Roley and Megan Mundell. The Mariners also put Holmgren, Grambo and Mundell into the championship 100 freestyle final.
Also qualifying in the top six for Sehome were Grambo and Leah Day in the 50 freestyle, Sakamoto in the 100 butterfly, Poehlman in the 500 freestyle, Holmgren in the 100 breaststroke and the 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams.
Other Squalicum swimmers qualifying for the championship finals included Kristina DeKoster in the 200 freestyle, Abby VonFeldt in the 200 IM, Serena Allendorfer in the 50 freestyle, Amanda Tapparo in the 100 butterfly, Allendorfer in the 100 freestyle, DeKoster in the 500 freestyle, Abby VonFeldt in the 100 backstroke, Jessica Lann in the 100 breaststroke and all three relays.
Bellingham swimmers to make the final six were Chloe Steinkamp in the 200 IM, Sydney Terrell in the 500 freestyle and the 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams.
Lynden qualified its 200 freestyle relay team for the championship final.
Swimmers who finished seventh through 12th on Friday will swim in the consolation finals and still earn points toward the team championship during the finals, which are set to begin at 2:45 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 8. The top three finishers in each event in Saturday’s championship finals earn an automatic berth to next week’s 2A state championships in Federal way.
Class 2A Northwest District preliminaries