Personal best times by several swimmers propelled the Papermaker girls to third place at the Kelso Invitational Saturday.
“It was a good day for us,” said head coach Mike Bemis. “I wasn’t figuring third place at all. I thought fifth or sixth would be the best we could do. To come up and get third shows that these girls swam really well.”
Columbia River won the 17-school meet with 521 points. Mountain View followed in second place with 401 points, Camas took third place with 335 points and Mark Morris finished in fourth place with 318 points.
Siobhan Choong captured first place for Camas in the 100-meter breaststroke with a time of 1 minute, 13.6 seconds. She also took third place in the 50 freestyle in 27.52 seconds. Choong, Brooke Kelly, Jessica Bretz and Madalyn Scherwinski earned third place in the 200 freestyle relay (2:00.45). Choong, Jessica Rouske, Callie Rouske and Kathleen Lyons claimed fifth place in the 400 freestyle relay (4:42.01).
Choong got into a tight battle with Skyview’s Hanna Eha and Battle Ground’s Talia Orelli in the final of nine heats in the breaststroke. She said it took a strong belief in herself, not turning her head to see where the other swimmers were and trying to stay in a straight line.
“It was actually a really good feeling,” Choong said. “Breaststroke is my top stroke. It uses everything. Your head, your limbs. Every muscle in your body has to be in sync. If not, you don’t go anywhere.”
Choong was also proud to finish third in such a deep field in the 50 freestyle. There were a total of 93 swimmers in the event racing in 19 different heats.
“I’m happy to see that,” she said. “I love swimming. It’s something that’s individual, but you still create a family with it.”
Jessica Rouske earned fifth place for the Papermakers in the 500 freestyle (6:36.95). She also took sixth place in the 200 individual medley (2:47.56). Lyons clinched fifth place in the 200 freestyle (2:37.55). Bretz grabbed seventh place in the 100 freestyle (1:03.62). Callie Rouske notched ninth place in the 100 breaststroke (1:28.39).
Kate Fritz, Amber Hall, Lexi Chau and Teghan Wicks took eighth place for Camas in the 400 freestyle relay (5:18.42). Scherwinski, Kelly, Jessica Rouske and Fritz finished in 13th place in the 200 medley relay (2:26.35). Lydia Keller, Bretz, Emily Hows and Callie Rouske earned 14th place in the 200 medley relay (2:28.74). Hall, Fritz, Emma Clow and Katrina Hull claimed 15th place in the 200 freestyle relay (2:21.62). Kendall Mooney, Shelby Gano, Shayanne Ireland and Savannah Kennedy took 15th place in the 400 freestyle relay (6:27.77).
Kelly claimed 11th place in the 200 individual medley (2:58.62) and 12th place in the 500 freestyle (7:24.46). Scherwinski secured 12th place in the 100 backstroke (1:19.54) and 16th place in the 100 freestyle (1:10.43). Alyssa Henry earned 13th place in the 500 freestyle (7:38.90). Keller took 15th place in the 100 backstroke (1:22.06). Hows notched 17th place in the 100 freestyle (1:10.73) and 18th place in the 50 freestyle (31.58). Hull snatched 17th place in the 200 freestyle (2:56.73).
Camas hosts Mountain View and Evergreen Wednesday, at LaCamas Swim & Sport. The races begin at 3:45 p.m.
The Papermakers also host Union and Heritage Wednesday, Oct. 21.
“I am very excited. I get to see some of my best friends and really hard competition at those meets,” Choong said. “I want my teammates to face everything head first. Just put it all out there. I’m going to do the same.”