Shenendehowa made the most of hosting the Section II girls swimming championships for the first time.
The Plainsmen won their 13th Division I (large school) title by using its depth of talent to outdistance their competition. Shen finished with 422 points, though it only won three of the 12 events. Niskayuna was second with 358 points, and Bethlehem placed third with 303 points.
The closest race was the 200-yard freestyle relay, where Niskayuna rallied in the final 50 yards to tie Shen for first place with a time of 1:40.75. Both teams qualified for the state championships, which take place next weekend in Rochester.
Olivia Samson, who swam the anchor leg on Shen’s 200 freestyle relay team, had a pair of individual victories to lead the Plainsmen. Samson won the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:55.89, and she finished first in the 500 freestyle with a time of 5:11.90.
The most outstanding swimmer award went to Guilderville’s Jenna Bickel, though. The sophomore won the 50 freestyle in a time of 24.28 seconds and won the 100 backstroke in an All-American qualifying time of 57.25 seconds.
Niskayuna’s Laura Manor also won a pair of individual titles at Sectionals. Manor finished first in the 200 individual medley with a time of 2:08.20, and she won the 100 butterfly in a time of 59.27 seconds.
Niskayuna’s Kina Zhou (100 freestyle) claimed a Sectional championship patch, along with Ballston Spa’s Addison Walkowiak (diving) and Briana Borgolini (100 breaststroke).
Bethlehem’s 200 medley relay team of Tara O’Donnell, Grace Ayer, Lily Powell and Lauren Zemering finished first with an All-American consideration time of 1:50.19, while Niskayuna’s 400 freestyle relay team of Zhou, Manor, Emma Terwilliger and Emily Whitaker took home a Sectional title with a time of 3:36.93.
In Division II (small schools), Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake outdistanced its competition by a wide margin. The Spartans finished with 548 points, followed by Queensbury in second place with 317 points.
BH-BL won the 200 medley and 400 freestyle relays, and its 200 freestyle relay qualified for states with a second-place finish. Sara Swett (500 freestyle) and Emily Hoskinson (100 backstroke) added individual victories for the Spartans.
Team scores: Shenendehowa 422, Niskayuna 358, Bethlehem 303, Ballston Spa 275, Saratoga Springs 224, Shaker 167, Guilderville 165, Albany 109, Mohonasen-Schalmont 71, Schenectady 69, Hudson Falls-South Glens Falls 38
State meet qualifiers
200 freestyle relay Bethlehem (Tara O’Donnell, Grace Ayer, Lily Powell, Lauren Zemeling) 1:50.19
200 freestyle Olivia Samson (Shen) 1:55.89; Emily Whitaker (Niskayuna) 1:56.63
200 individual medley ` Laura Manor (Niskayuna) 2:08.20; Kelsey Barbour (Shen) 2:11.25; Lily Powell (Bethlehem) 2:13.60; Grace Ayer (Bethlehem) 2:13.62; Talia Sternbach (Shaker) 2:14.45
50 freestyle ` Jenna Bickel (Guilderville) 24.28; Kina Zhou (Niskayuna) 24.53; Hanlon MacDonald (Albany) 25.21; Lauren Zemering (Bethlehem) 25.31
Diving ` Addison Walkowiak (Ballston Spa) 479.70; Devon Delay (Ballston Spa) 437.00; Bailey Wind (Shaker) 426.10; Nicole Kverek (Ballston Spa) 399.00
100 butterfly ` Laura Manor (Niskayuna) 59.27; Lily Powell (Bethlehem) 59.93; Tara O’Donnell (Bethlehem) 1:01.74
100 freestyle ` Kina Zhou (Niskayuna) 52.84; Emily Whitaker (Niskayuna) 55.08; Lisa Liu (Shen) 55.11; Emma Terwilliger (Niskayuna) 55.22; Hanlon MacDonald (Albany) 55.47
500 freestyle ` Olivia Samson (Shen) 5:11.90
200 freestyle relay ` Shen (Deborah Korzun, Lisa Liu, Kelsey Barbour, Olivia Samson) 1:40.75; Niskayuna (Emily Whitaker, Grace Matuszyk, Emma Terwilliger, Kina Zhou) 1:40.75
100 backstroke ` Jenna Bickel (Guilderville) 57.25; Tara O’Donnell (Bethlehem) 1:00.52
100 breaststroke ` Briana Borgolini (Ballston Spa) 1:06.08; Kelsey Barbour (Shen) 1:06.15; Grace Ayer (Bethlehem) 1:08.30; Talia Sternbach (Shaker) 1:09.25
400 freestyle relay ` Niskayuna (Kina Zhou, Laura Manor, Emma Terwilliger, Emily Whitaker) 3:36.93; Shen (Deborah Korzun, Lisa Liu, Kelsey Barbour, Olivia Samson) 3:39.03; Bethlehem (Lauren Zemering, Grace Ayer, Tara O’Donnell, Lily Powell) 3:39.42
Team scores: Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake 548, Queensbury 317, Gloversville-Mayfield 284, Glens Falls 229, Scotia-Glenville 178, Troy 141, Fonda-Johnstown 124, Albany Academy 105, Emma Willard 84, Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk 76, Amsterdam 73, Tamarac 43
State meet qualifiers
200 medley relay ` Burnt Hills (Emily Hoskinson, Courtney Duchesne, Lauren Zentko, Kelly Ludeke) 1:52.84
200 freestyle ` Gabriana Beckford (Scotia-Glenville) 1:59.33
100 butterfly ` Jade Woodend (Gloversville-Mayfield) 1:00.86; Lauren Zentko (BH-BL) 1:01.08
500 freestyle ` Sara Swett (BH-BL) 5:16.37; Gabriana Beckford (Scotia-Glenville) 5:16.88
200 freestyle relay ` Queensbury (Alanna Blackburn, Eileen Goralski, Rachael McMahon, Brooke Barber) 1:43.11; Burnt Hills (Samantha Buzash, Christy Brown, Emily Dreisbach, Kelly Ludeke) 1:43.41
100 backstroke ` Emily Hoskinson (BH-BL) 1:01.82
400 freestyle relay ` Burnt Hills (Kelly Ludeke, Christy Brown, Sara Swett, Emily Hoskinson) 3:48.48