BARABOO — Lancaster’s Brenden Polkinghorn saved his best performance of the season for, well, almost last.
The talented junior had a day most can only dream about at Saturday’s WIAA Division 2 Baraboo Sectional, the second to last meet of the season.
Polkinghorn qualified for state in four events finishing fifth in the 100-yard freestyle (50.19) and anchoring each of Platteville/Lancaster’s three state-qualifying relays.
Platteville junior Ben Bahr gave the Hillmen a fifth state qualifier with an 11th place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:04.22).
Friday’s WIAA D2 State Championships begin at 6:30 p.m. at Madison’s UW Natatorium.
The winners of each event at sectionals qualifies for state, as well as the next 12 fastest swimmers/relays from throughout the state, not including sectional winners.
Bahr’s 11th place finish in the 100 breaststroke is the perfect example of just how competitive the Baraboo sectional was.
In the breaststroke alone, the Baraboo sectional is sending 12 of the 16 state qualifiers, including 11 of the 12 extra qualifiers.
“The meet was incredibly fast,” said Hillmen coach Tom Caccia. “Our sectional alone is sending over 65 percent of the swimmers to the state meet, meaning only 35 percent of the state participants from the other three sectionals combined!”
Senior Jordan Kress, Bahr and sophomore Sam Iselin teamed with Polkinhorn to finish seventh in the 200-yard medley relay in 1:44.94. The quartet is seeded 12th out of 16 entering the state meet.
Platteville/Lancaster’s 200-yard freestyle relay team of seniors Ryan Heberlein, Kress, and Nicholas Volkman, and Polkinghorn finished sixth at sectionals (1:32.41) and will be seeded 10th at state.
Senior Wade Roberts, Heberlein, Volkmann and Polkinhorn finished seventh in the 400-yard freestyle relay in 3:24.62. They will also be seeded 12th.
Polkinhorn is seeded 10th in the 100 freestyle, while Bahr is seeded 15th entering Friday’s state meet.
“I’m very pleased with how we swam,” added Caccia. “Six of the top 10 ranked teams in the state were at our sectional. To come out of the meet where we did and sending five events to state is a testament to the quality of swimming our team has produced this season. I’m very proud of our guys.”
WIAA Division 2 Baraboo Sectional
(from Saturday, Feb. 9 @ Baraboo)
Team Scores: 1.Edgewood 331.5, 2.Milton 309, 3.Monona Grove 303, 4.McFarland 259.5, 5.Sauk Prairie/Wisconsin Heights 247, 6.Fort Atkinson 142.5, 7.Baraboo 142.5, 8.Platteville/Lancaster 127.5, 9.Stoughton 96, 10.DeForest 46, 11.Jefferson/Cambridge 36.
Platteville/Lancaster’s state qualifiers
200 medley relay — 7.Pla/Lan (Jordan Kress, Ben Bahr, Sam Iselin, Brenden Polkinghorn) 1:44.94. 100 freestyle — 5.Polkinghorn (P/L) 50.19. 200 freestyle relay — 6.Pla/Lan (Ryan Heberlein, Kress, Nicholas Volkmann, Polkinghorn) 1:32.41. 100 breaststroke — 11.Bahr (P/L) 1:04.22. 400 freestyle — 7.Pla/Lan (Heberlein, Roberts, Volkmann, Polkinghorn) 3:24.62.
200 freestyle — 11.Volkmann (P/L) 1:55.91, 14.Wade Roberts (P/L) 2:00.22. 50 freestyle — 10.Kress (P/L) 23.33, 17.Heberlein (P/L) 24.15, 22.Bahr (P/L) 24.46, 26.Ryan Murray (P/L) 25.14. 100 butterfly — 15.Iselin 1:01.03, 17.Colin Salzmann 1:03.43. 100 freestyle — 12.Volkmann (P/L) 52.13, 13.Heberlein (P/L) 52.16, 19.Roberts (P/L) 53.89, 23.Jake Fulton (P/L) 55.82, 24.Murray (P/L) 56.04. 100 backstroke — 11.Kress (P/L) 1:00.39, 16.Fulton (P/L) 1:05.20, 18.Salzmann (P/L) 1:05.93.