HUDSON, Wis. -- The River Falls girls’ swimming and diving team might be a little smaller than last season, but it turned in some strong performances in its season-opening meet at Hudson Thursday night, Sept. 24.
The defending Big Rivers Conference champion Raiders swept the top spots in all 12 events to earn a 114-63 victory, but Wildcat coach Caitlin Brudzinski said she was encouraged by what she saw from her team.
“We have a smaller team than last year, but it is made up of strong swimmers and divers,” she said. “We saw strong swims from returning and new swimmers alike, and I'm excited to see how they keep improving.”
Sophomore Mackenna Anderson turned in a pair of second place finishes for the Cats, finishing behind Hudson’s Ellie Wilson in both the 200 yard freestyle and 500 freestyle. Wilson won the 200 free in 2 minutes, 11.68 seconds and Anderson was second in 2:18.43, while Wilson took first in the 500 free in 5:46.63 and Anderson was second in 6:08.21.
Hudson’s Jayden Hartwig won the 100 butterfly with a time of 1:11.21 while River Falls’ Stephanie Derks was second in 1:12.73. Anderson and Derks also teamed up with Katelynn Farner and Mickey Baar for a second place time of 2:00.95 in the 200 freestyle relay. The Hudson team of Tatum Dietz, Alexis Johnson, Hartwig and Sophia Slavsky took first in 1:57.76.
The Raiders took the top two spots in the 200 medley, with Dietz, Rhiann Neitzel, Wilson and Faith Kalsow winning in 2:01.22 and Allie Garza, Alexis Johnson, Hartwig and Faith Eilertson second in 2:07.8.
Neitzel contributed first place times of 2:13.33 in the 200 individual medley and 1:02.32 in the 100 backstroke to the Raiders’ team score and Eilertson won the 50 freestyle in 29.3 seconds while Kalsow won the 100 free in 1:03.27 and Hartwig took first in the 100 butterfly with a time of 1:11.21.
Hudson’s Katie Auge won the diving competition with a score of 231.7 while River Falls’ Madison Berg was second with 215.9 and Wildcat teammate Madisyn Tape was third with 198.65.
River Falls will host Rice Lake Tuesday, Sept. 29, at 6:30 p.m. while Hudson returns to action Tuesday, Oct. 6, at Rice Lake.