Girls Swimming: New Trier advances everyone to state; Glenbrook South’s Olivia Smoliga sets two pool recordsKara Bonk of Regina swims in the 200 yard medley relay at the Glenbrook South sectional in Glenview, Ill. on Saturday, November 10, 2012. | Jon Durr~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 10, 2012 8:29PM
In a meet where beating state qualifying times carries significantly more importance than individual finishes or a team’s point total, the New Trier girls swimming team showed why it’s the strongest program in the state on Saturday.
The Trevians qualified all 21 of their sectional entrants – 18 individuals and three relays – for the first day of the two-day state swimming meet. New Trier’s depth, along with four event victories, helped the Trevians win the Glenbrook South Sectional championship 283.50-254 over Glenbrook South.
Loyola Academy finished third with 204 points.
“We had one goal coming into today, and that was to get everyone qualified,” New Trier senior Campbell Costley said. “That’s kind of the name of the game in sectionals; just racing the clock and not worrying about where you place. We were really successful.”
Costley narrowly finished second in the 500-yard freestyle. She was .16 seconds behind event winner Stephanie Marchuk. Marchuk, a senior at New Trier, also won the 200-yard freestyle.
Marchuk’s victories helped the Trevians maintain an early lead which was built by junior Juliette Corboy (482.85) and senior Olivia Loucks (438.70), who finished first and second in diving, and New Trier’s 200-yard medley relay. The 200-yard medley relay – swam by junior Kara Lucenti, senior Riley Hayward, senior Jessica Sutherland and junior Amelia Girgenti – began the swim meet with a .04-second victory over Loyola.
Although New Trier won sectionals and is in a prime position to challenge for its third-straight state title, the star of Saturday’s meet was Glenbrook South senior Olivia Smoliga. The four-time state champion dominated both of her individual events – she broke her own pool records in the 50-yard freestyle (22.76) and the 100-yard backstroke (54.35) – and swam the anchor leg in the 200-yard freestyle relay and the 400-yard freestyle relay.
Glenbrook South was trailing in both relays when Smoliga entered the water, but the senior led the Titans to victories in both races.
The one relay Smoliga didn’t swim was the 200-yard medley relay, in which Glenbrook South finished fourth and qualified for state. Smoglia felt that race, which was followed by Glenbrook South senior Kimmy Durkin and sophomore Kelly Cordes both qualifying for state in the 200-yard freestyle, was a moment that inspired the rest of the team.
“Seeing them doing so well, I think got the entire rest of the team excited and motivated to post fast times,” Smoliga said.
The meet’s other individual winners included Glenbrook North senior Molly Orbon (200-yard Individual Medley), Loyola freshman Maria Kyle (100-yard butterfly), Loyola senior Evan Swenson (100-yard breaststroke) and Niles West junior Edan Scott (100-yard freestyle).
The first day of the state swimming meet will take place on Nov. 16 at Evanston Township High School.