Jamestown High School swimming and diving coach Ben Smith wanted to challenge his relay teams during Tuesday's dual with Bismarck High, so he decided to change things up a bit.
The coach split his A and B relay swimmers into new teams, which brought a different energy and helped the Blue Jays score more points. The strategy worked as the Blue Jays defeated the Demons 98-83 at the JHS Pool.
"Relays are really fun because they get to work together," Smith said. "Swimming and diving is an individual sport but then you get to come together and compete as a team, too, in relays."
Jamestown currently has the eighth-ranked 200-yard medley team in the state, led by sophomores Jordyn Mewes and Tyler Alonge, eighth-grader Chea Baugh and junior Kenzie Carlson. The team swam its best time of the season last Friday at home, touching in 2:00.21-shaving nearly a second (0.72) of its previous top mark.
"It's pretty cool to be ranked eighth because we've been working really hard at this," Carlson said, who's qualified for state in eight events. "This relay has a really good chance of breaking our school record and if we could get top eight at state it would be even better."
The four girls have most recently emphasised working on team communication and learning from their mistakes.
"We need to take the extra time to work on our strokes and making sure they're progressing in a way that we like," Carlson said.
The Blue Jay team sits 10 seconds off top-ranked Bismarck Century but only is only 3 seconds behind the state's sixth-best time. Jamestown would currently qualify for the events A finals.
Overall, Jamestown won seven of the 12 events against Bismarck. The Blue Jay winners included: Mewes (200 free), Alonge (200 medley), Carlson (50 free, 100 free) and Alexes Prasek (100 backstroke).
"We had a lot of personal best performances today," Smith said. "We probably had about 70 percent of our swims as personal bests."
The Jays' Nadia Netolicky won the diving competition with a six-dive score of 178.70. The senior is currently ranked 16th with a season high of 194.35, which also came last Friday.
"She's been very consistent," Smith said. "She's really focusing on cleaning up her dives, getting her dives straight and stuff like that."
This meet concluded three competitions in six days for the Blue Jays, their most grueling part of the 2018 season. Smith admitted the girls were beginning to get a little tired.
"We had a meet Friday, Saturday and today," Smith said. "It wasn't a lot of time to recover. We'll rest a little bit this weekend and start getting ready for the end of the regular season."
The West Region meet is scheduled for Nov. 3 in Jamestown. The Blue Jays will resume competition in nine days against Wahpeton and Fargo Shanley at the JHS Pool.
"It's senior night and it's really fun to have our team whole because we're limited on entries during WDA and state," Smith said.
Jamestown 98, Bismarck High 83
200 medley relay: 1. B, (Tayler Pollert, Katie Brodersen, Ellie Eggl, Natalie Becker) 2:07.29; 2. J, (Allysah Larson, Keelie Renwick, Paris Eslick, Adrienne Bear) 2:16.75; 3. J, (Alexes Prasek, Jaz Wick, Cloe Nelson, Josie Brown) 2:19.77; 4. J, (Gabby Romans, Elena Origlia, Caroline Kiser, Abbie Gilbertson) 2:45.53.
200 free: 1. J, Jordyn Mewes 2:10.84; 2. J, Chea Baugh 2:12.09; 3. J, Delanie Fick 2:20.57.
200 IM: 1. J, Tyler Alonge 2:33.20; 3. J, Prasek 2:34.69.
50 free: 1. J, Kenzie Carlson 26.45; 3. J, Calli Lynch 28.15; 6. J, Larson 29.34.
Diving: 1. J, Nadia Netolicky 178.70; 3. J, Cat Raap 163.75.
100 butterfly: 1. B, Katie Brodersen 1:09.89; 5. J, Bear 1:23.44; 7. J, Caroline Kiser 1:50.29.
100 free: 1. J, Carlson 58.54; 2. J, Mewes 1:00.38; 4. J, Chea Baugh 1:02.02.
500 free: 1. B, Ellie Eggl 5:51.55; 3. J, Josie Brown 6:36.06; 4. Nelson 6:49.92.
200 free relay: 1. J, (Finck, Alonge, Mewes, Baugh) 1:52.32; 3. J, (Deaver, Bear, Lynch, Carlson) 2:13.83; 5. J, (Renwick, Meeghan McNear, Julie Kiser, C. Kiser) 2:20.40; 6. J, (Eslick, Gilbertson, Elena Origlia, Regan Keller) 2:20.99.
100 backstroke: 1. J, Prasek 1:11.52; 3. Alonge 1:14. 35; 4. Finck 1:16.19.
100 breaststroke: 1. B, Natalie Becker 1:20.97; 2. Bear 1:30.19; 4. Eslick 1:32.74; 5. Origlia 1:38.17.
400 free relay: 1. B, (Brodersen, Pollert, Eggl, Becker) 4:04.70; 2. J, (Lynch, Mewes, Deaver, Alonge) 4:08.26; 3. J, (Brown, Larson, Nelson, Wick) 4:52.56.