Visitation Girls Win Sixth Consecutive Minnesota Class A HS Title

2018 MSHSL Girls A Swim & Dive Championships

The Visitation High School girls won their sixth consecutive Class A Minnesota High School State title last Friday in Minneapolis, topping the runners-up from Hutchinson by close to 50 points.

Just like last year they won the title without winning a single event for the meet, but did have four 2nd place finishes to go along with outstanding depth to earn them the victory.

Junior Kali Fischer was the runner-up in the 200 IM for the second straight year in a time of 2:04.54, trailing Breck freshman Yvonne Jia (2:04.01), and also anchored their 2nd-place finishing 400 free relay where Hutchinson won in a new Class A Record of 3:27.64.

A 50.83 lead-off from Grace Hanson and a 50.82 anchor from Lexi Kucera brought Hutchinson to the new record which broke their prelim mark of 3:28.49. Fischer anchored in 51.61 for Visitation who touched 2nd in 3:31.41.

Visitation also had runner-up finishes from senior Maria Mattaini in the 500 free (5:05.23) and their 200 medley relay (1:48.18). Those events were won by Hutchinson’s Hailey Farrell (5:02.04), who moved up a spot after finishing 2nd last year, and Breck who dominated the medley relay by close to four seconds in 1:44.39. Their team had the top backstroke and freestyle splits in the field from Katelin Phelps (26.39) and Jia (22.70) respectively.

Jia was one of two swimmers who won two individual events, also claiming the 100 fly (55.41) in addition to the 200 IM.

Also picking up two wins was Benilde sophomore Taylor Williams, who repeated as the winner in the 200 free (1:48.58) over Hutchinson’s Kucera (1:51.10), and improved on her 2nd place finish last year to win the 100 free in 50.44 over Hanson (50.95) and Kucera (51.07) of Hutchinson.

Hanson had an individual win of her own in the 50 free, as she was the only swimmer to break 23 seconds in a time of 22.94.

OTHER WINNERS

  • Ellie Gunderson of Fridley won the 1-meter diving event with a score of 381.65, edging fellow senior Emi Quill (378.90) of Becker.
  • Hanson (23.12 lead-off) and Kucera (23.29) led Hutchinson to a successful title defense in the 200 free relay, clocking 1:35.59 to top Breck (1:36.03), who had a 23.03 anchor from Jia.
  • Phelps won the 100 back in 55.43, falling just shy of the Class A Record of 55.35 set by Caley Oquist in 2010, with Delano’s Emma Kern just behind in 55.53. Phelps was 2nd in the event last year.
  • Just like Phelps, Orono’s Caroline Gardner moved up from 2nd last year to win the 100 breast in 1:03.08, with Darah Coleman of Sartell the runner-up in 1:03.95.

TEAM SCORES

  1. Visitation, 319.5
  2. Hutchinson, 272
  3. Breck, 234
  4. Sartell-St Stephen, 156.5
  5. Delano, 146

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About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James formerly competed for the Laurentian Voyageurs in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in February of 2018, placing 11th at the OUA Championships in the 200 IM, and graduated with a bachelor's degree in economics in May. He …

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