10/20/2017 7:27:00 AM Lakeland swimming wins sixth straight
dual meet to end the regular season
Lakelands Jessica Hilgart competes in the second leg of the 400-yard freestyle relay during a non-conference dual meet against Marshfield on Tuesday, Oct. 17, at Lakeland Union High School.
Nick Sabato/Lakeland Times
Lakeland senior Anntaya Corbesia swims the backstroke portion of the 200-yard individual medley during a non-conference dual meet against Marshfield on Tuesday, Oct. 17, at Lakeland Union High School.
Lakeland Union High School had one more dual meet on its schedule before the swim season begins to become more individualized in the postseason.
The Thunderbirds won just one dual meet all of last season and started this year 0-2, but on Tuesday they hosted Marshfield for a chance to end the season with a sixth consecutive win.
In an overwhelming performance, in which Lakeland mixed and matched its lineup, the T-Birds demolished Marshfield 117-49.
"I'm happy for the seniors," LUHS head coach Chris Garcia said. "It's nice to finish their high school careers with a win."
Senior Anntaya Corbesia won four events in the final home meet of her career.
She won the 100-yard freestyle in which Lakeland had the top three finishes, as classmates Kennedy Richards and Georgia Garcia took second and third respectively. Corbesia was also a member of the 200 freestyle relay with Richards, Mariah Angove and Holly Jaeger and the 400 freestyle relay with Jaeger, Garcia and Angove.
Perhaps her most impressive swim of the night came in the 200 individual medley, a race she doesn't swim often. Corbesia missed her warmup due to other obligations, so she was entered in order to use it as a warmup for her other events, and she ended up winning it with it a time of 2:33.38.
"She had been out of town and came back for the meet so she did not get a good warmup so I asked her to use the IM as a warmup and not to sprint and she still did really well with it," Garcia said. "She's a good all-around swimmer. She can do any of the strokes. When you put her in the IM, she's bound to do well in it. She's just talented."
Freshman Mariah Angove also won all four events she was entered in.
Not only was she a member of the 200 and 400 freestyle relays, but she was also in the 200 medley relay and she also won the 100 backstroke with a time of 1:06.00, nearly four seconds faster than the rest of the field. Georgia Garcia and Kelsee Blaska also took third and fourth in that event.
Lexie Tiffany earned another win in the 100 breaststroke, this time by nearly three seconds, while seniors Carley Hintz and Morgan Angove took second and third, respectively. Meanwhile, freshman Megan Ross won the 50 freestyle with a time of 28.84.
Celeste Teichmiller earned second place finishes in the 200 freestyle and the 100 butterfly, while Jaeger was third in the latter.
Lakeland was able to sweep all three relay events, while also taking second in each event as well.
Amanda Kosmen had a big night, winning the 200 freestyle with a time of 2:15.37, which was more than 10 seconds faster than the rest of the competition, while also placing second in the 500 freestyle and the 200 and 400 freestyle relays.
"She had a lifetime best in the 200 and 500 tonight," Garcia said. "She turned around, jumped right out of the 500 and did the 200 free relay and had the fastest split in both the A and B varsity relays."
Lakeland will likely finalize its lineup for the Oct. 27 Great Northern Conference meet this week, but for now the team can enjoy its strong finish to the regular season.
After rebuilding season in 2016 and a slow start to this year, it's a good way to end the year.
"It's really enjoyable because I've been swimming for like nine years," said Blaska, a co-captain for the LUHS squad. "Chris has been my coach since before club and it's just nice because all of us seniors have been swimming together for nine years. We've bonded together really nicely and it's a big accomplishment for us, coming from not the best season last year."
Now that the season gets more individualized, as not everyone can qualify for the sectional meet, Blaska doesn't believe it will hurt the team chemistry at all.
"I honestly think it will bring us closer together because we're a very supportive team," Blaska said. "Whether it's the swimmers that are going to stop swimming or the ones that are going to move on, I would say it helps us get more connected because we're supporting each other through our individual events and we're pushing each other more."
Lakeland (6-2, 4-2 GNC) is back in the pool on Friday, Oct. 27, at UW-Stevens Point for the GNC meet.
Nick Sabato may be reached at email@example.com or via Twitter @SabatoNick.