The Blue Springs and Blue Springs South girls swimming and diving teams made a strong showing against a field that could be the best in the state this season.
Blue Springs totaled 83 points to finish 11th and Blue Springs South was 13th with 56.5 points. Lee’s Summit North tied for 17th at 29. Marquette claimed the team title with a score of 311.
Diver Katie Garten led the way for Blue Springs, claiming third place with an 11-dive score of 370.35 against a field that included some of the top divers in both Class 2 and Class 1. She edged Lee’s Summit North’s Annica Valmassei (356.05) and Annie McCord (354.90) for third.
"Katie Garten had the standout meet for us this weekend,” Blue Springs coach Kevin Bigham said. “Coach Missy Jackson has done it again and Katie looks like she could win a state title or two by the time she's done here.
"It was an up-and-down meet for us, and showed the girls that we have some work to do if we want to repeat conference. We had three-hour swim workouts on Monday and Wednesday before the meet, so the girls knew they weren't rested, so I was really happy with a lot of the performances.”
Jenna Wright led the swimmers, claiming two state berths while finishing eighth in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 25.79 seconds after a time of 24.89 in the preliminaries Friday. She also took 14th in the 100 backstroke in 1:02.15 after going 1:01.37 Friday.
Wright also teamed with Carson Ludwig, Annemarie Rehbein and Shaedyn Read for a seventh-place finish in the 400 freestyle relay (3:44.06). Wright, Rehbein, Read and Gracie Lefholz were ninth in the 200 medley relay (1:53.64). Read took 10th in the 100 freestyle (54.50).
Regi Hecker led the way for Blue Springs South as the Jaguars earned five state berths. Hecker tied for fourth in the 50 freestyle (25.07, 24.93 Friday) and was seventh in the 100 freestyle (54.80, 54.80 Friday).
Anna Zweerink punched her ticket to state in the 100 butterfly with a 13th-place finish in 1:02.08 (1:01.33 Friday). Hecker, Maelyn MacLean, Darby Vaughn and Zweerink earned the state cut in the 400 free relay with a 15th-place finish in 3:57.95 (3:50.65 Friday).
“We had a great meet this weekend at COMO. We achieved five automatic state qualifying times,” Jaguars coach Errich Oberlander said. “We also had huge time drops all weekend from almost everyone that attended.”