SK makes solid showing at state swim meet

It wasn’t great — but it was good.

That largely sums up the Wolves’ performance at the state swim and dive championships last weekend at the King County Aquatic Center.

South Kitsap came back to place sixth in the 200-freestyle relay and 10th in the 400-freestyle relay after a shaky showing in Friday’s preliminaries at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way. Sophomore Nicole Hinley had the best individual showing for the Wolves, finishing 10th in the 100-yard butterfly (58.12) and 11th in the 200 freestyle (1:56.33).

“We had a couple of really good relay swims,” said coach Dennis Anderson. “Everyone had a rough time Friday night, but I felt it was there. We did a nice job on Saturday.

“The girls did a good job of rebounding.”

Anderson said he wasn’t sure what contributed to South’s problems in the prelims, but wondered if it was a case of performance anxiety.

“I could tell right away that their taper was dead on and they were ready to go,” he said. “I don’t know if it was nerves or what.”

Sophomore Nicole Hinley, who swam on both teams with senior Rachel Wester, juniors Ashley Becker and Kelsey Bagley, agreed.

“It didn’t go too well,” she said. “No one really had any good swims.”

The 200-freestyle relay went into the finals in eighth place after a 1 minute, 42.87 second performance. The 400 made the consolation finals seeded 13th, in 3:48.39.

Still, they managed to turn it around – and take down some rivals in the process.

“We were lucky that we made it into the top eight,” Hinley said of the 200, which had a final time of 1:42.06. “In the finals, everyone pulled together and we did well. We were excited to beat Gig Harbor.”

As for the 400, completed in 3:43.85, “We beat Stadium in that. That was one of our other goals,” Hinely said.

Anderson called the weekend different than any he had seen in the past.

“Friday was 100 percent not good, and Saturday was 100 percent great,” he said.

Anderson said he was perplexed about the lack of power on Friday because the team had performed so well before.

“They’ve just got to learn to do it on the first night,” he said. “It was weird because they did it on the first night of districts.”

Hinley said she didn’t know if they would make it into the championship heat.

“I never thought we would get a relay into the top eight at state,” she said. “All the girls were really excited about that.”

As for her own performance, the sophomore said the 100 butterfly was a repeat of last year.

“I would’ve finished sixth, but again I wasn’t in the final heat because I didn’t perform right the first day.”

She added that the 200 freestyle “wasn’t on for me that day, either,” but that she improved upon her time in the finals and was happy with it.

Anderson called the situation one where Hinely knew she could do better.

“She probably went out a little slower in her races than she needed to, and we talked about that,” he said.

Hinley said she felt something went wrong before they got to Federal Way.

“You really have to be in the right mental state of mind to compete at your best,” she said. “I think it was all there, but somewhere in my taper or training something went wrong. Maybe that’s something that can be fixed next year.

Regardless, she said she was happy that the season ended so well.

“I’m proud of all the girls,” she said. “They stepped up to the plate to get everything done.”

Class 4A state girls swim and dive championships

At King County Aquatic Center, Federal Way

(State champions and all SK placers)

200 medley relay: 1, Garfield (Fiona Majeau, Jordan Hanna, Louisa Dunwiddie, Maddy Morgan) 1:49.54. 200 freestyle: 1, Andie Taylor, Skyline, 1:46.55; 11, Nicole Hinely, South Kitsap, 1:56.33. 200 individual medley: 1, Katie Kinnear, Eastlake, 2:02.53. 50 freestyle: 1, Amber Cratsenberg, Jefferson, 23.87. Diving: 1, Shawna Jordan, Auburn, 422.8. 100 butterfly: 1, Kinnear, Eastlake, 53.1; 10, Nicole Hinely, South Kitsap, 58.12. 100 freestyle: 1, Cratsenberg, Jefferson, 51.57. 500 freestyle: 1, Taylor, Skyline, 4:45.47. 200 freestyle relay: 1, Skyline (Nina Zook, Meghan O’Keefe, Maria Volodkevich, Taylor) 1:38.71; 6, South Kitsap (Rachel Wester, Ashlee Becker, Kelsey Bagley, Nicole Hinely) 1:42.06. 100 backstroke: 1, Annemar Thayer, Ballard, 54.07. 100 breaststroke: 1, Volodkevich, Skyline, 1:04.25. 400 freestyle relay: 1, Skyline (Zook, O’Keefe, Volodkevich, Taylor) 3:33.85.

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