Swimmers stun Thief River Falls
By John George firstname.lastname@example.org What a difference a week can make. The Yellowjacket swim team went into the home pool of Thief River Falls last Thursday and pulled off one of the biggest upsets in Perham history. Just one week after TRF won the Sec...
By John George
What a difference a week can make.
The Yellowjacket swim team went into the home pool of Thief River Falls last Thursday and pulled off one of the biggest upsets in Perham history.
Just one week after TRF won the Section 8A True Team meet, and two days before competing in the True Team State Meet, Perham stunned the Prowlers, 86-84 in a double dual meet with Lake of the Woods.
"I wasn't expecting that," head coach Sheri Ressler said. "I knew under the right circumstances, we could be a lot closer to them than at the True Team Meet. I was thinking, 'At least we'll get a win against Lake of the Woods.'"
Both the Jackets and TRF beat LOTW. Perham won 135-24, TRF won 135-26. Thief River Falls won the 8A True Team title in Park Rapids on Oct. 14. Perham was fifth at the meet.
Perham began the meet with a win in the 200 medley relay by Leah Richter, Kelsey Kratzke, Abby Kratzke and Sara Formanek, with a time of 2:24.21. The Jackets finished 2-4 in the 200 free (Erika Conlin, Maggie Carlson) and in the 200 I.M. (Jeanna Kratzke and Kelsey Kratzke), then finished 3-4-5 in the 50 free (Kaila Formanek, Sara Formanek, Jessica Ressler) and they were in business.
"I could see we were making them work for it," Ressler said. "It was their parents night, so I'm sure they were getting everyone in and weren't holding their big swimmers back for State (True Team)."
Perham then won the next three events. Abby Kratzke took the 100 butterfly and was followed by a record-setting performance by Leah Richter in the 100 free. Richter's time of 1:00.03 broke a five-year old mark set by Emma Otto (1:00.62).
Not to be outdone, Abby Kratzke was back at it in the next event, the 500 free. Swimming the long-distance for the first time this season didn't stop her from taking first, and setting a new school record of her own with a time of 6:04.49. Conlin had set the record at 6:08.79 just last week.
After a second place finish in the 200 free relay, Perham was tied with TRF with three events to go.
TRF finished 1-2-3 in the 100 backstroke, but the Jackets answered with a 1-2 finish by Kelsey Kratzke and Richter in the 100 breaststroke.
Perham needed at least a 1-3 finish in the final event, the 400 free relay. They got just that as the team of Kaila Formanek, Jeanna Kratzke, Sara Formanek and Abby Kratzke took first (4:11.08), more than six seconds ahead of the second place team from TRF. Perham's next squad of Conlin, Carlson, Ressler and Danielle Lehman was third (4:23.96), 14 seconds ahead of the next TRF relay team.
"This is a huge deal for us," Ressler said. "We've put in more yards to this time of year than ever before. Now the girls can see how it's paying off. We're so much better at this point in the season than we've ever been. Now they know how close they are to swimming at that next level."
The Jackets will have the Mid-State Conference Meet in Staples on October 27 starting at 6 p.m. They are aiming to upend Park Rapids as conference champs.
The girls will then have two full weeks to get ready for the Section 8A meet, which will be in Grand Forks Nov. 10-11.