by Scott DCamp
Thief River Falls senior Annika Dalager swam to a 13th place finish in the 50-yard freestyle race at the Class A Girls State Swimming Meet held Thursday through Saturday at the University of Minnesota Aquatics Center.
“Annika has had one major goal since starting high school swimming and that has been state,” said Thief River Falls Head Coach Danielle Spiten. “After a devastating loss last year, she had a great swim at sections and earned a spot to the state meet. Not only did she get her best time at sections, she did it again during prelims at state, and then again during finals. She couldn’t have had a better end to her high school swimming career. She showed up each day ready to compete and she did! She ended up breaking the long standing 50 freestyle record set by Chelsea Haviland (25.15) with a personal best time of 24.89.
“Her team is so proud of all that she accomplished this year, and that is not just because Annika is a great swimmer, but because she is their captain, teammate, and an amazing role model. As a team we can’t wait to see what Annika does in the future, because you know it will be amazing, but she will be greatly missed. But, she will graduate knowing that she has motivated and energized another generation of swimmers.”
Grace Hanson of Hutchinson claimed the 50-yard freestyle state championship with a time of 22.79 seconds. She tied the Class A state record also, held by Lindsey Horejsi of Albert Lea, that was originally set in 2015. Second place went to Nyssa Bentz of Marshall, who finished the race in 23.54. Dalager’s time was 24.89.
Class A State Swimming
• 50 Freestyle – Girls 50 Yard Freestyle – (A – Final) 1. Grace Hanson, Hutchinson, 22.79; 2. Nyssa Bentz, Marshall, 23.54; 3. Julia Bartell, Waconia, 23.57; 4. Makenzie Herzog, Melrose Area, 23.59; 5. Ava Hoffman, Visitation, Mendota Heights, 23.70; 6. Grace Farnsworth, Monticello, 23.88; 8. Bryn Greenwaldt, Foley, 23.92; 9. Lauren Benedict, Benilde-St Margaret’s, 23.99. (B – Final) 9. Libby Fischer, Visitation, Mendota Heights, 24.29; 10. Teegan Beyers, Red Wing, 24.54. 11. Meghan Minne, Hibbing, 24.69; 12. Maddie Hogue, Mankato East, 24.84; 13. Annika Dalager, Thief River Falls, 24.89; 14. Kate Thomasen, Two Harbors-Silver Bay, 24.97; 15. Shaniya Newton, Breck School, Golden Valley, 25.07; 16. Sophia Leonard, Mankato West, 25.24.
• 50 Freestyle Preliminaries – 1. Grace Hanson, Hutchinson, 22.98; 2. Ava Hoffman, Visitation, Mendota Heights, 23.56; 3. Julia Bartell, Waconia, 23.61; 4. Makenzie Herzog, Melrose Area, 23.82; 5. Nyssa Bentz, Marshall, 23.90; 6. Bryn Greenwaldt, Foley, 23.98; 7. Grace Farnsworth, Monticello, 24.09; 8. Lauren Benedict, Benilde-St Margaret’s, 24.18; 9. Libby Fischer, Visitation, Mendota Heights, 24.44; 10. Meghan Minne, Hibbing, 24.50; 11. Teegan Beyers, Red Wing, 24.68; 12. Maddie Hogue, Mankato East, 24.72; 13. Kate Thomasen, Two Harbors-Silver Bay, 24.78; 14. Sophia Leonard, Mankato West, 24.91; 15. Annika Dalager, Thief River Falls, 25.00; 16. Shaniya Newton, Breck School, Golden Valley, 25.07; 17. Alexis Tesch, Milaca, 25.10; 18. Rachel Josephson, Little Falls, 25.21; 19. Elli Jankila, Eveleth-Gilbert, 25.22; 20. Ellie Ulvin, Park Rapids Area, 25.37.