If nothing else Whitney Weisz is an All-American.
The Little Falls Flyers senior swam the fastest 50- and 100-yard freestyles during Friday’s Class 1A state swimming and diving prelims at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center.
Staples-Motley’s Jaelin Beachy reached her goal of making Saturday’s finals and the surprise of the meet may have been the Little Falls Flyers 200 free relay which secured a spot in Saturday’s consolation finals.
Weisz, the five-time state meet veteran, displayed her speed as she swam an All-American time of 23.42 for the No. 1 seed heading into Saturday’s finals. Mankato West’s Danielle Nack was second in 23.65. Staples-Motley’s Jaelin Beachy was 19th in 25.70.
“The Nack girl from Mankato West is saving herself for tomorrow’s race so we will have to see,” said Flyers head coach Tim Corbett. “It’s between those two. Win or lose, Whitney is going to swim fast. She’s not scared and she knows what she has to do. She’s confident she can do it. Whitney is pumped.”
Weisz posted an All-American time of 51.19 to grab the No. 1 seed in the 100 free. Viren Solveig of Grand Rapids was second at 52.22.
“I just don’t see anyone dropping that much time to catch her,” Corbett said. “I know there was a low 52, but this is really her stronger race. If there is some competition that will only make Whitney go faster. She is looking really solid in both races and she’s ready for a battle.”
Then it was Weisz’s turn to anchor the Flyers 200 free relay of Diana Kempenich, Kenzie Hanson, Josie Lange and Weisz. The foursome swam a 1:42.75 to clinch the 16th and final spot for Saturday’s final. Grand Rapids was 17th with a 1:42.83. Chsago Lakes was 15th with a 1:41.93.
“I was thinking we had an outside chance of sneaking in, but we had to significantly drop some time and we did,” said Corbett. “The excitement came when the race was done. We thought we had finished 16th, but when we checked with the judges they said we finished 17th. Well there was an issue with the clock pad and the team they had in 16th place, we actually beat them in our heat. So then they gave us the 16th place. We went from excitement to disappointment to excitement again.”
Despite winning the 50 free and finishing second in the 100 breaststroke at last week’s Section 8-1A meet, Beachy’s strength is the breaststroke. She showed that Friday finishing sixth in the prelims to advance to Saturday’s finals for the first time in three tries.
Beachy swam a 1:07.90 to tie for sixth with Mahtomedi’s Andrea Yechout. Kathryn Ostrom of St. Louis Park was the top finisher at 1:04.90.
“My nerves were going crazy, but that’s usually how they are so I’m used to it,” said Beachy. “I saw my time and I figured it out that I was going to be in the top eight so I was super excited. I’m tied for sixth so I did even better than what I had imagined. My goal was top eight so I came through with that.”
Beachy’s goal Saturday now is to swim a low to middle 1:07 and see where that places her. She can do no worse than her goal of eighth.
50 freestyle: 1-Whitney Weisz (Little Falls) 23.42, 19-Jaelin Beachy (Staples-Motley) 25.70
100 freestyle: 1-Weisz (LF) 51.19
200 freestyle relay: 1-Sartell 1:36.83, 16-Little Falls (Diana Kempenich, Kenzie Hanson, Josie Lange, Weisz) 1:42.75
100 breaststroke: 1-Kathryn Ostrom (St. Louis Park) 1:04.90, 6t-Beachy (SM) 1:07.90
JEREMY MILLSOP may be reached at email@example.com or 855-5856.