Three Mariner swimmers — Remi Nagle, Lauren Kuhns and Greg Smith — and two divers — Ian Hall and Annali Metz — competed at State championships at Bartlett High School in Anchorage last week.
Nagle swam two events, the 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly. Kuhns swam the 500 freestyle and Smith the 100 backstroke.
“Both Remi and Greg swam well, but did not achieve the end results they hoped for,” said Smith. “However, Lauren had an incredible swim in the 500 free, improving her best time by eight seconds. This was the event she prepared for all season and she nailed it. … (She) takes top honors for HHS.”
Homer’s divers also faced challenges. Hall’s started before leaving Homer.
“He was sick all last week, practiced one day for about 35 minutes and that was all he could take,” said Harmon Hall, the Mariner head dive coach and Ian Hall’s father.
In Metz’s first dive, her forehead touched the board. It was so slight Coach Hall couldn’t see it from where he was sitting. However, officials caught it and immediately raised an “insufficient-unsatisfactory” card. As soon as he could reach her, Hall asked Metz what had happened. The red mark on her forehead told the story.
Still, Metz got back on the board and “did her other four dives and did pretty well, but there was some stiff competition,” said Hall.
“Scores were higher than last year. The girl that won diving set a new state record. She scored more than the boys,” said Hall of Eagle River’s Jami Stone, who scored 474.70 on her one-meter dive. In boys competition, Brayden Schachle of West Valley High School scored 462.95.
Overall, Smith said the swimmers had a strong season.
Juneau girls team took first place in the state championships. Kodiak and Dimond tied for second. From the Kenai Peninsula, Soldotna placed sixth and Kenai 16th.
Boys final team results were Dimond in first and Kodiak second; from the peninsula, Soldotna placed seventh.