Jennifer Lein

Senior Jennifer Lein competed in the 200-freestyle relay for Prior Lake in a 95-89 South Suburban Conference dual win over Eagan Sept. 19.

The Prior Lake girls swimming team moved one step closer to the South Suburban Conference title.

The No. 7-ranked Lakers competed against the other ranked team from the SSC, No. 10 Eagan, and came away with a 95-89 home win Sept. 19.

Prior Lake improved to 4-0 in league waters and will be back in the pool Sept. 26 at Eastview at 6 p.m. The Lakers' final four SSC duals are versus Shakopee Oct. 1, at Rosemount Oct. 8, at Farmington Oct. 15 and home to Lakeville North Oct. 22.

Prior Lake also competed in the Duals in the Pool Invitational in Hutchinson Sept. 21. The Lakers were third in the five-team field behind Visitation and Hutchinson, ranked No. 1 and 2 respectively, in Class 1A.

In the win over Eagan, Prior Lake won six events, including both freestyle relays. Ninth-grader Maria Soria, sophomore Lexi Nelson, eighth-grader Halle Nelson and junior Mary O'Neil teamed up to win the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:42.15.

O'Neil, junior Ella Knutson and sophomores Brooke Bauer and Grace Netz won the 400 freestyle (3:47.44).

O'Neil also won two individual events, claiming the 200 freestyle (1:58.57) and the 100 butterfly (58.02). Knutson was tops in the 50 freestyle (24.87), while Halle Nelson won the 100 freestyle (55.02).

Lexi Nelson, Netz, Halle Nelson and Knutson took second in the 200 medley relay (1:51.71).

Halle Nelson was runner-up in the 50 freestyle (25.40) for the Lakers, as were junior Sarah McDonald in diving (177.50), Netz in the 200 individual medley (2:16.96), Knutson in the 100 freestyle (55.08), Bauer in the 500 freestyle (5:26.86) and junior Ainsley Clayton in the 100 backstroke (1:03.18).

In Hutchinson, McDonald was tops in diving with 180.70 points, while sophomore Alaina Wolter was fourth (169.80) and ninth-grader Sophia Church took 10th (135.55).

The Lakers' best relay finish came from the 200 medley team of Clayton, Soria, O'Neil and Knutson taking third (1:53.24). The 200 freestyle team of Soria, Knutson, senior Gabrielle Jensen and sophomore Abby Mattila was sixth (1:46.10), as was the 400 freestyle team of Bauer, Matilla, O'Neil and ninth-grader Isabel Ondracek (3:56.30).

O'Neil had two top-five individual finishes taking second in the 100 butterfly (58.87) and fifth in the 50 freestyle (25.41). Knutson did the same in the 50 freestyle (3rd, 25.11) and the 100 freestyle (5th, 57.29).

Soria was fourth in the 100 breaststroke (1:10.94) and sixth in the 200 individual medley (2:18.96). Clayton was fifth in the 100 backstroke (1:04.51), while Bauer was sixth (1:04.65).

Ondracek was sixth in the 500 freestyle (5:34.49) and seventh in the 200 freestyle (2:05.62).

Other finishes for Prior Lake: Bauer in the 200 freestyle (8th, 2:07.19), Matilla in the 200 freestyle (9th, 2:08.49), Netz in the 200 individual medley (8th, 2:19.87) and the 100 breaststroke (7th, 1:12.38), Jensen in the 100 butterfly (10th, 1:08.23) and junior Elin Kairies in the 500 freestyle (8th, 5:46.93).

The Lakers will also compete in the Greyhound Invitational in Duluth Sept. 28.

The Section 2AA True Team meet is set for Oct. 12 at Hidden Oaks Middle School in Prior Lake. The field is strong with the likes of No. 2 Minnetonka, No. 3 Eden Prairie and No. 8 Chanhassen, along with the Lakers.

Bloomington Jefferson, Chaska and Shakopee are also in the field.

The Class AA State True Team is Oct. 19 at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center. Minnetonka is the defending champion.

Tom Schardin covers sports for Savage and Prior Lake. He is dependable, sarcastic and always joking around. Tom enjoys running and swimming and is often busy coaching his two kids' sports teams.

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