The Sauk Prairie girls swim team set the tone for the state meet in the first event of the day on Friday.

The Eagles won the opening heat of the 200-yard medley relay and turned that momentum into an 11th-place finish in the WIAA Division 2 state girls swimming and diving championships at the University of Wisconsin-Natatorium. Sauk Prairie compiled 71 points to finish 11th, while Madison Edgewood won the title with 346 points, New Berlin Eisenhower (202) took second, McFarland (194.5) took third, Tomahawk (142) placed fourth and Whitefish Bay (134.5) finished fifth.

“It was a great night for us,” Sauk Prairie head coach Julie Goodman said on Monday. “They all swam well. They were all happy with how they swam. ... They came in Friday and they were excited for the meet. A lot of times they’re excited to just make it (to state), but Friday they wanted to come in and really do something.”

That enthusiasm showed right away, as the Eagles were the first team to touch the wall on Friday night. Sauk Prairie’s quartet of Sydney Rall, Giulia Brickl, Grace Williams and Kaitlyn Miller entered the day seeded ninth in the 200-yard medley relay thanks to a sectional time of 1 minute, 53.04 seconds. The Eagles took it up a notch at state, using a time of 1:52.81 to win the heat and place seventh overall, just missing out on the podium.

Goodman said that swimming in lane four took the adrenaline up a level and the Eagles were in good position when Miller dove in for the freestyle leg.

“When our senior captain dove in, she dove in behind and she swam the race of her life,” Goodman said of Miller. “She put her head down, she finished, they both looked up at the same time, and she out-touched her. She anchored the relay and won the heat.”

That same determination showed up in the 200-yard freestyle relay. The Eagles entered as the seventh seed and lowered their sectional time (1:42.43) by more than a second to touch the wall in 1:41.25, place fifth overall and make the podium.

“All of them swam out of their minds,” Goodman said of the 200-yard freestyle relay quartet of Williams, Alexa Judd, Miller and Mariah Chao. “By far our best moment of the night.”

The Eagles lowered their time by exactly one second in the 400-yard freestyle relay, as Williams, Judd, Rall and Chao finished in 3:44.36 to take 13th.

Chao also competed in a pair of individual events on Friday. The junior touched the wall in 55.89 seconds to place 14th in the 100-yard freestyle, while using a time of 25.70 seconds to finish 15th in the 50-yard freestyle.

“From day one, my preseason meeting with her, she was like ‘I want to go to state,’” Goodman said of Chao, who reached state in an individual event for the first time. “She was nervous, but I think she handled it really well. ... She had very good races in the 50 and the 100, and then when she got out after the 100, she said ‘I’m ready for the relays,’ and she anchored both the 200 free and 400 free.”

Rall put up Sauk Prairie’s best individual finish of the night. The senior placed 11th in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 1:01.04, her third time competing in the event at state.

“Her goal was just to drop time and move up, and she did that,” Goodman said. “She is such a great leader for us, she was so happy for her teammates getting on the podium.”

Rall and Miller were the two members of Sauk Prairie’s seven-swimmer senior class that competed at state.

“I have known them since their sophomore year and you get to see them grow up,” Goodman said of the senior captains. “I’ve seen them grow from typical teenage girls to adults. As the captain, you’re the liaison in between the coaches and swimmers, you’re the gel and the girls watch what you do. The captains set the tone for the season and they did a great job. ... They both really embraced that leadership role. We’re going to miss them, but they really left an impression on what it takes to be a leader.”

WIAA D2 GIRLS STATE SWIMMING AND DIVING MEET

Team scores: Madison Edgewood 346, New Berlin Eisenhower 202, McFarland 193.5, Tomahawk 142, Whitefish Bay 134.5, DeForest 134, Baraboo 103, Monroe/New Glarus 99, Whitnall 94, Stoughton 77, Sauk Prairie 71, Ashwaubenon 67.5, Fort Atkinson 63, Jefferson/Cambridge 58.5, Monona Grove 56, Brown Deer/Milw. University School 53, Menomonie 48.5, Rice Lake 45, Whitewater 44, New Berlin West 38, Greendale 31, Shorewood 27, Medford 26, Black River Fall 25, Plymouth 22, River Falls 20, Ladysmith 18, Edgerton 18, Seymour 15, Rhinelander 14, Grafton 10, Platteville/Lancaster 7, Brookfield Academy 6, Sturgeon Bay co-op 4.5, Kohler 4, Portage 4, Merrill 3.

200-yard medley relay — 1, Edgewood (Barth, Silvestri, Petersen, O’Driscoll), 1:44.59. 2, McFarland, 1:47.67. 3, New Berlin Eisenhower, 1:48.56. 4, Baraboo, 1:49.38. 5, DeForest, 1:51.03. 6, Rice Lake, 1:52.17. 7, Sauk Prairie (Rall, Brickl, Williams, Miller), 1:52.81. 8, Monroe/New Glarus, 1:52.92. 9, Tomahawk, 1:53.16. 10, Ashwaubenon, 1:53.56. 11, Stoughton, 1:53.99. 12, Brown Deer/Milw. University School, 1:54.47. 13, Whitefish Bay, 1:55.49. 14, Rhinelander, 1:55.64. 15, Greendale, 1:55.91. 16, Shorewood, 1:56.29.

50 freestyle — 1, Moderski, McFarland, :22.91. 2, O’Driscoll, Edgewood, :23.84. 3, Barth, Edgewood, :24.15. 4, Kujawa, Greendale, :24.20. 5, Petersen, Edgewood, :24.29. 6, Hargraves, DeForest, :24.43. 7, Hammer, Monroe/New Glarus, :24.46. 8, Henderson, Menomonie, :24.88. 9, Konzen, Grafton, :25.39. 10 (tie), Greenwood, Menomonie, and Duffy, Jefferson/Cambridge, :25.40. 12, Dallman, Tomahawk, :25.43. 13 (tie), Banks, Sturgeon Bay co-op, and Nygaard, McFarland, :25.45. 15, Chao, Sauk Prairie, :25.70. 16, Harris, Rice Lake, :25.87.

100 freestyle — 1, Moderski, McFarland, 50.69. 2, Barth, Edgewood, 52.25. 3, Petersen, Edgewood, 52.81. 4, Gatzke, New Berlin Eisenhower, 53.01. 5, O’Driscoll, Edgewood, 53.30. 6, Hargraves, DeForest, 53.38. 7, Bormett, Stoughton, 53.50. 8, Landwehr, McFarland, 53.56. 9, Ma. Hammer, Monroe/New Glarus, 53.98. 10, Guman, New Berlin Eisenhower, 54.37. 11, Dallman, Tomahawk, 54.68. 12, Back, Monona Grove, 54.81. 13, O’Connell, Ashwaubenon, 55.38. 14, Chao, Sauk Prairie, 55.89. 15, Dix, Whitefish Bay, 56.00. 16, Barnes, Whitefish Bay, 56.28.

200 freestyle relay — 1, Edgewood (O’Driscoll, Barth, Walker, Rodriguez), 1:35.26. 2, Jefferson/Cambridge, 1:40.00. 3, Tomahawk, 1:40.36. 4, Whitefish Bay, 1:41.18. 5, Sauk Prairie (Williams, Judd, Miller, Chao), 1:41.25. 6 (tie), McFarland and Fort Atkinson, 1:41.52. 8, Menomonie, 1:41.74. 9, Ladysmith Co-op, 1:42.06. 10, DeForest, 1:42.48. 11, Baraboo, 1:42.51. 12, Monona Grove, 1 42.55. 13, Ashwaubenon, 1:43.11. 14, Rice Lake, 1:43.77. 15, Whitnall, 1:43.80. 16, New Berlin Eisenhower, 1:44.02.

100 backstroke — 1, Me. Hammer, Monroe/New Glarus, :58.22. 2, Guman, New Berlin Eisenhower, :58.25. 3, Miles, Whitnall, :58.38. 4, Bergman, Medford, :58.90. 5, Dix, Whitefish Bay, :59.16. 6, McElvain, Whitnall, :59.46. 7, M. Kooima, Stoughton, :59.65. 8 (tie), Steffel, Ashwaubenon, and Hanson, McFarland, :59.75. 10, Henderson, Menomonie, 1:00.94. 11, Rall, Sauk Prairie, 1:01.04. 12, Marcks, Tomahawk, 1:01.36. 13, Friske, Kohler co-op, 1:01.42. 14, Koehler, Baraboo, 1:01.49. 15, Willis, DeForest, 1:02.36. 16, Harrington, McFarland, 1:02.37.

400 freestyle relay — 1, Edgewood (Rodriguez, Walker, Petersen, Silvestri), 3:30.39. 2, McFarland, 3:34.22. 3, New Berlin Eisenhower, 3:35.91. 4, DeForest, 3:39.04. 5, Tomahawk, 3:39.26. 6, Whitefish Bay, 3:41.40. 7, Baraboo, 3:41.54. 8, Monroe/New Glarus, 3:41.68. 9, Jefferson/Cambridge, 3:41.89. 10, Stoughton, 3:43.30. 11, Ashwaubenon, 3:43.74. 12, Whitnall, 3:44.05. 13, Sauk Prairie (Williams, Judd, Rall, Chao), 3:44.36. 14, Fort Atkinson, 3:45.35. 15, Medford, 3:47.07. 16, Plymouth, 3:48.55.

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