Postseason Preview: Saline, Skyline and several local swimmers and divers top contenders at state championships
Last year, when Farmington Hills Mercy won the Division 1 girls swimming state title, it broke an 11-year streak of either Pioneer or Saline winning a title in the state’s largest division.
Joseph Tobianski | AnnArbor.com
And this year, the Hornets stand the best chance of bringing the title back to Washtenaw County.
Saline is one of three area teams heading to this weekend’s state meet, Friday and Saturday at the Holland Aquatic Center. They do so coming off their fourth straight year going undefeated in the regular season and winning the SEC Red title.
Eleven Hornets swimmers qualified for the state finals in individual events. They include Maddy Frost, seeded sixth in the 50 freestyle and seventh in the 100 backstroke and freshman Amelia Armstrong-Grant, seeded eighth in the 100 free and 12th in the 200 free.
Saline also has all three of its relays seeded in the top eight.
Pioneer will send four individual swimming qualifiers and returning All-State diver, Christina Lu, who was seventh last year. In the pool, the Pioneers are led by sophomore Karen Zhang, seeded eighth in the 100 breastroke and 12th in the 100 butterfly.
The River Rats will send a pair of divers to the meet, including regional champion Molly Gelb who was sixth last year, along with four individual state qualifiers.
Location: Oakland University.
Area Teams: Dexter, Lincoln, Milan, Skyline.
Outlook: Skyline moves down from Division 1 to Division 2 this year, and can expect to move up in the final standings as a result.
The Eagles finished sixth at last year’s state finals, and could finish as high as second this year (Holland is expected to win the title). Skyline's Ashley Shanley, who won the 100 breaststroke at last year's Division 1 meet, will look to add to her state title collection as the No. 2 seed in the 100 breast and top seed in the 200 individual medley. Other state title contenders include Rebecca Dickey, who is the second seed in the 100 butterfly, and freshman Katie Portz, who is in the top five in the 100 and 200 freestyle.
Milan will send three divers to the meet, and Lincoln will send one. Dexter will also send a team, which includes All-State contender Bridget Morgan in the 500 freestyle.
Location: Eastern Michigan University
Area Teams: Chelsea.
Outlook: The Bulldogs could place top-eight in the 200 medley relay, and Talia Dyerly could be All-State in the 100 freestyle.