It was another meet and another team record broken by Portage’s Brooklyn Miller.
The senior standout broke her own team record in the 50-meter freestyle, winning the event in 28.56 seconds and breaking the previous record of 28.83 seconds, which she set last season. It was one of two victories for Miller on Tuesday night, but it wasn’t nearly enough to beat Baraboo, as the Thunderbirds rolled out of Portage with a 123-42 victory in a Badger North Conference dual meet.
Miller, who holds six team records in individual events, and is part of another team record in the 400 freestyle relay, almost broke another one of those records on Tuesday. Miller’s other victory for Portage came in the 100-meter backstroke with a time of 1:12.81. That was just under a second slower than her record time of 1:11.93 set during her sophomore season in 2017.
“Her backstroke really stood out to me. It’s been a couple of years that she hasn’t had the time that she wanted, so she’s worked hard at adjusting her stroke over the past year, and when the season started we made a few more tweaks to it,” Portage coach Tammy Tollefson said. “She’s getting closer to taking a time off the wall there again. Once she starts doing that, then backstroke can again be something that she can do at state. We’ll see if we get back to that place.”
The undermanned Warriors were no match for the Thunderbirds, who won nine of 11 events, including all three relays. Portage did have some other highlights though, including Leigha Andraschko’s second-place finish in the 100-meter breaststroke. Andraschko finished with a time of 1:32.68 in the event, finishing two seconds behind Baraboo’s Ellie Hennessy, who won the race for the T-Birds.
Tuesday marked the first time Andraschko swam four different events in a meet after undergoing shoulder surgery in the offseason.
“Leigha with her breaststroke was great to see,” Tollefson said. “She had surgery this season, so to see her come out and swim that strong and have a full load of meet events at this meet, it’s the first time she’s done that this season, so that was excellent.”
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Sophomore Natalie Weidner finished second in the 200 individual medley for Portage. Weidner finished in 2:58.10, behind Baraboo’s Mattie Letendre, who won the event in 2:47.89. Weidner was also third in the 100 freestyle at 1:11.75.
Portage’s top relay finish came in the 200 medley, where the foursome of Miller, Andraschko, Rubie Kohn and Weidner finished second in 2:20.51.
And while some of Portage’s other times weren’t as fast as Tollefson hoped, the coach is confident those swimmers will be able to improve as the season continues.
“A couple of our girls were a little bit off on their times and they weren’t happy with it, but they came back with what they need to work on, knowing what felt right, knowing where their race slowed down,” Tollefson said. “That’s a lot of what we work on, the feel of where they need to be in the water and what they need to do. So for them to be able to recognize it is a step forward.”
Next up for Portage will be the Lodi Invitational on Saturday, followed by a home meet against River Valley next Tuesday.
BARABOO 123, PORTAGE 42
200 meter medley relay – 1, Baraboo (Gneiser, Lohr, Letendre, Pelland) 2:12.41; 2, Portage (Miller, Andraschko, Kohn, Weidner) 2:20.51; 3, Baraboo (Hilario, Hennessy, Bradley, Beal) 2:28.49; 4, Baraboo (Weyenberg, Abrahams, Huebsch, Zimmer) 2:42.26. 200 freestyle – 1, Gneiser, B, 2:25.37; 2, Laux, B, 2:45.25; 3, Abrahams, B, 2:49.86; 4, Muente, P, 3:24.84; 5, Poches, P, 3:48.42. 200 individual medley – 1, Letendre, B, 2:47.89; 2, Weidner, P, 2:58.10; 3, Hennessy, B, 3:04.87; 4, Reuter, B, 3:15.09. 50 freestyle – 1, Miller, P, 0:28.56; 2, Huebsch, B, 0:32.78; 3, Laux, B, 0:33.43; 4, Stucczynski, B, 33.61; 5, Andraschko, P, 0:34.38; 6, Routson, P, 0:34.71. 100 butterfly – 1, Lohr, B, 1:10.81; 2, Gneiser, B, 1:12.98; 3, Bradley, B, 1:18.04; 4, Kohn, P, 1:21.73. 100 freestyle – 1, Pelland, B, 1:05.83; 2, Letendre, B, 1:09.17; 3, Weidner, P, 1:11.75; 4, Stuczynski, B, 1:14.22; 5, Routson, P, 1:17.63; 6, Humke, P, 1:26.68. 400 freestyle – 1, Bradley, B, 5:30.99; 2, Abrahams, B, 5:57.93; 3, Beal, B, 6:01.47. 200 freestyle relay – 1, Baraboo (Laux, Huebsch, Stuczynski, Hennessy) 2:11.91; 2, Baraboo (Reuter, Benson, Hess, Beal) 2:20.75; 3, Baraboo (School, Hanson, Zimmer, Belter) 2:33.54; 4, Portage (Poches, Humke, Muente, Routson) 2:35.32. 100 backstroke – 1, Miller, P, 1:12.81; 2, Lohr, B, 1:15.60; 3, Pelland, B, 1:18.71; 4, Reuter, B, 1:24.80; 5, Kohn, P, 1:30.83; 6, Poches, P, 1:58.57. 100 breaststroke – 1, Hennessy, B, 1:30.68; 2, Andraschko, P, 1:32.68; 3, Beal, B, 1:34.08; 4, Humke, P, 1:49.95; 5, Muente, P, 2:07.05. 400 freestyle relay – 1, Baraboo (Letendre, Laux, Stuczynski, Lohr) 4:43.24; 2, Baraboo (Gneiser, Reuter, Bradley, Pelland) 4:45.97; 3, Portage (Routson, Kohn, Weidner, Miller) 4:51.20; 4, Baraboo (Weyenberg, Hess, Hilario, Abrahams) 5:11.42; 5, Portage (Poches, Humke, Andraschko, Muente) 6:35.28.