Swimming: State trip eludes Elks as Brainerd wins section

by Bruce Strand, Sports editor

The Elk boys swim team, good enough to challenge for a state trip in the true-team format for the first time, came up short Saturday.

Brainerd outscored the Elks 1003 to 921 in the six-team meet at Alexandria. The Warriors had only two first-places and the Elks had four, but depth is the key in true-team. The Elks have good depth but Brainerd had more.

“Brainerd killed us with their B, C and D relays, and in diving,” said coach Denise Eidem. “And, we were a little flat today, after using up a lot of emotion on Thursday when we beat Anoka.”

In true-team, each squad has four entrants per event and every one counts in the team score, unlike dual meets where the top six count and regular MSHSL section and state meets where the top 16 count.

The Elk squad consisted of Elk River, Zimmerman and Spectrum swimmers. The co-op’s other member, Rogers, competed in a separate true-team sectional at Sartell.

Brainerd’s lone wins came from the medley relay and Bradyn Watson in breaststroke.

First-placers for the Elks were Aaron Schwab in individual medley and backstroke, Collin Krueger in 200 freestyle, and the 400 freestyle relay team of Krueger, Jacob Christy, Friend Bechtel, and Schwab.

This was the first meet where the Elks did not place first. They Elks are 5-0 in dual meets and have won two invitationals. Eidem said this year is the first time the team has had the personnel to make a bid for the section true-team title.

The Elks will host Blaine on Thursday.

Team scoring

1. Brainerd 1003

2. Elk River-Rogers-Zimmerman-Spectrum 921

3. Alexandria 857

4. St. Cloud Tech 713

5. St. Michael-Albertville 688

6. Moorhead 258

How Elks scored

200 medley relay — (2) Friend Bechtel, Peter Schultz, Aaron Schwab, Dan Webster, 1:47.72 (10) Obrey Bechtel, AJ Schlee, Casey Lee, Joe Held, 1:56.12 (16) Spencer Hlavachek, Aaron Ling, Alex Kopp, Ryan Patka, 2:02.01 (19) Brady Anderson, Andrew Weisgram, Mark Chamberlain, Brandon DeValk, 2:10.83

200 freestyle — (1) Collin Krueger 1:52.23 (3) Andy Lee 1:56.20 (7) Andy Olson 2:00.20 (9) Ryan Pokorny 2:00.66

200 individual medley — (1) Schwab 2:07.97 (2) Schultz 2:11.23 (6) Schlee 2:19.26 (14) Kopp 2:31.27

50 freestyle — (5) Webster 23.90 (6) Jacob Christy 24.22 (14) Held 25.36 (19) Ryan Patka 26.78

Diving — (14) Andy Bronschteyn 104.65 (17) AJ Eckblad 73.35 (18) Derek Meyer 53.10

100 butterfly — (3) F. Bechtel 59.58 (4) C. Lee 59.97 (7) Mark Chamberlain 1:03.50 (13) Kopp 1:07.45

100 freestyle — (5) Christy 52.48 (6) Krueger 52.59 (9) Webster 53.22 (14) Conner Swigart 56.74

500 freestyle — (2) A. Lee 5:18.15 (3) Olson 5:21.91 (11) Pokorny 5:33.22 (16) Owen Musgjerd 5:56.38

200 freestyle relay — (2) Webster, Christy, Schultz, Krueger, 1:35.39 (6) Schlee, O.Bechtel, Swigart, Held, 1:40.20 (16) Patka, DeValk, Chamberlain, Hlavachek, 1:52.65 (17) Weisgram, Cole Forrest, Anderson, Ling, 1:56.42

100 backstroke — (1) Schwab 57.02 (2) F. Bechtel 52.29 (16) Hlavachek 1:07.93 (20) O. Bechtel 1:08.93

100 breaststroke — (2) Schultz 1:07.46 (9) Schlee 1:11.13 (15) C. Lee 1:15.05 (18) Ling 1:17.19

400 freestyle relay — (1) Krueger, Christy, F. Bechtel, Schwab, 3:27.37 (5) Olson, Pokorny, C.Lee, A. Lee, 3:41.19 (10) Swigard, Patka, Hlavachek, Kopp, 3:55.52

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