ELK RIVER - Sam Smith dove into the Class 2A state swimming and diving meet by winning Saturday's Section 8-2A diving competition Saturday.
Smith will not represent the Brainerd Warriors alone. Her 400.10 first-place points were followed by Tiffany Etterman's second-place 321 points and Katy Etterman's 316.90 fourth-place points.
Also heading to the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center is Brainerd's 200-yard medley relay of Siri Smith, Della Gramer, Destiney Schindele and Sarah Dens.
It's the first time in program history Brainerd will send all three divers to the state tournament.
"Mary Streiff did an outstanding job of coaching these girls," said Warrior head coach Dan Anderson. "They also really stepped up their concentration in the last three rounds. It was a very tight competition."
The top four divers advance to state and after the semifinal dives, Tiffany Etterman was in fifth and Katy Etterman was in seventh.
In the finals, Tiffany scored 94.6 points to jump two spots. Katy Etterman scored the second best finals score with a 103.25 to make the cut. She trailed only Smith's 117.65 finals points.
The medley relay finished fourth, but its time of 1:53.94 defeated the state standard and placed them third on the school's all-time list.
"I don't think that relay team has been together once this year until Saturday," said Anderson. "We knew that was what we were going to do. Sarah Dens was going to slide into that freestyle leg and in the process sacrifice her own individual race, which was the 200 freestyle right after it. That was the only hope we had to get that relay team to state."
The state cut was 1:54.29 and in the prelims the group swam a 1:56.6. Still Anderson was confident.
"We had good exchanges and all the girls swam great times," Anderson said. "The odds were definitely against them, but I told the girls I'm going to quit counting them out because they are tough competitors."
Schindele tallied two fourth-place finishes in the 50 freestyle (25.10) and the 100 free (55.30).
Dens was eighth in the 100 free (56.53) and the 200 free (2:06.27). Siri Smith finished sixth in the 100 backstroke (1:04.56) and Grace Bymark scored an eighth in the 100 butterfly.
Brainerd's 400 free relay of Siri Smith, Nikki Hansen, Dens and Schindele finished third and the 200 free relay placed sixth.
That helped the Warriors finish third as a team.
"We are thrilled to finish third in this meet," said Anderson. "St. Cloud Tech was undefeated in dual meets this year and tied for the CLC Championship. To finish ahead of them took a tremendous effort.
"In the 28 individual swims this weekend we dropped more than 100 seconds. I am very proud of the girls."
Dropping a lot of time was Laura Goll in the 500 free. She finished ninth with a time of 5:33.28. That put her one second off the school record.
Team Score: 1-Maple Grove 543, 2-Elk River 376, 3-Brainerd 277, 4-St. Cloud Tech 274, 5-Buffalo 271, 6-Alexandria 118, 7-Bemidji 108, 8-Moorhead 90
200 medley relay: 1-Maple Grove 1:49.47, 4-Brainerd (Siri Smith, Della Gramer, Destiney Schindele, Sarah Dens) 1:53.94
200 freestyle: 1-Elaine Boosalis (MG) 1:54.63, 8-Sarah Dens (Brd) 2:06.27, 11-Laura Goll (Brd) 2:05.73, 16-Nikki Hansen (Brd) 2:08.28
200 individual medley: 1-Hailey Szews (ER) 2:08.91, 9-Siri Smith (Brd) 2:22.62, 16-Grace Bymark (Brd) 2:30.28
50 freestyle: 1-Tess Behrens (MG) 24.21, 4-Schindele (Brd) 25.10, 11-Alex Erickson (Brd) 26.63, 15-Aylah Pagel (Brd) 27.34
Diving: 1-Sam Smith (Brd) 400.10, 2-Tiffany Etterman (Brd) 321.00, 4-Katy Etterman (Brd) 316.90
100 butterfly: 1-Courtney Grunewald (Brd) 59.18, 8-Bymark (Brd) 1:05.69, 11-Erickson 1:05.71
100 freestyle: 1-Ali Domeier (Tech) 53.19, 4-Schindele (Brd) 55.30, 8-Dens (Brd) 56.53, 12-Hansen (Brd) 57.65
500 freestyle: 1-Melissa Killpatrick (ER) 5:04.99, 9-Goll (Brd) 5:33.28, 15-Stephanie Hansen (Brd) 5:42.64
200 freestyle relay 1-St. Cloud Tech 1:39.62, 6-Brainerd (Pagel, Bymark, Erickson, Hansen) 1:45.92
100 backstroke: 1-Tess Behrens (MG) 57.23, 6-Siri Smith (Brd) 1:04.56, 11-Ronia Gramer (Brd) 1:07.86
100 breaststroke: 1-Tracy Wormwood (ER) 1:08.50, 10-D. Gramer (Brd) 1:16.10, 16-Mariah Moen (Brd) 1:17.91
400 freestyle relay: 1-Maple Grove 3:34.91, 3-Brainerd (Siri Smith, Hansen, Dens, Schindele) 3:45.84
JEREMY MILLSOP may be reached at email@example.com or 855-5856.
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