The Morris/Minnewaska girls swimming and diving team was on hand at the season opener Friday, Aug. 23, in Sauk Centre, where eight pool records were broken.

“That’s gotta be a record,” Morris/Minnewaska head coach Linda Hoffmann said. “Premiering three top state competitors: Anna Lucas from Sauk Rapids, Kali Sayovitz from Sauk Centre and Mackenzie Herzog from Melrose. Sayovitz broke many of her own pool records at this meet. To many break so many pool records at the first meet meant these girls girls were training all summer long.”

The Gators fared well against the strong competition, Hoffmann said. They had nine top 10 finishes in the season opening invite.

Bailey Schoen was the highest individual place winner in the 100-yard backstroke. She placed third with a time of 1:08.67. Schoen also had a 10th place finish in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 1:13.37.

Julia Kuehne had a ninth-place time in the 50-yard freestyle. She finished in 27.83. Michele Stai finished 10th in the event with a 27.95.

“Julia had a good first meet in the sprints,” Hoffmann said. “Michele swam well in her free sprints and as anchor in the 200 free and 400 free relays.”

Stai was a part of the 200-yard freestyle relay that placed 10th with a time of 1:55.83. The relay also included Avery Jorgenson, Kuehne and Elizabeth Murken. The relay team of Schoen, Shannon Dougherty, Makenna Hufford and Stai placed seventh in the 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 4:12.18.

Murken had her personal best in the 200-yard IM at the first meet of the season, Hoffmann said. She placed ninth in the event with a time of 2:35.68. She also took seventh in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:20.88.

“You can tell Liz (Murken) trained all summer and we are seeing the results of that,” Hoffmann said.

The 200-yard medley relay of Dougherty, Murken, Schoen and Kuehne finished in eighth with a time of 2:08.7 to round out the top 10 finishers at the invitational.

Dougherty also swam a personal best in the 100-yard backstroke, Hoffmann said. She finished just outside the top 15 in 16th with a time of 1:12.87.

“We hope to be at full capacity when school starts as we had many of our top swimmers out due to vacations and injuries,” Hoffmann said

The Gators next compete against Montevideo in the dual season opener on Thursday, Aug. 29, at the Regional Fitness Center in Morris.

Sauk Centre Invite

200 MEDLEY RELAY – (8) Morris/Minnewaska (Shannon Dougherty, Elizabeth Murken, Bailey Schoen, Julia Kuehne) 2:08.7… (14) Morris/Minnewaska (Natalia Obregon, Leslie Murken, Olivia Edmunds, Claire Reed) 2:20.13… (20) Makarian Schott, Anna Uecker, Soffia Stadtherr, Gabby Schneider) 2:57.71

200 FREE – (11) Dougherty 2:19.95… (15) Makenna Hufford 2:22.77… (19) Miah Roen 2:31.35

200 IM – (9) E. Murken 2:35.68… (17) Obregon 2:46.95

50 FREE – (9) Kuehne 27.83 (10) Michele Stai 27.95… (19) Avery Jorgenson 30.73 (20) Molly LeTendre 32.02

100 FLY – (10) Schoen 1:13.37… (17) Edmunds 1:19.53

100 FREE – (11) Stai 1:02.5 (T12) Kuehne 1:02.55… (18) Reed 1:05.83 (19) LeTendre 1:09.06

500 FREE – (14) Hufford 6:42.19… (17) Roen 6:49.51

200 FREE RELAY – (10) Morris/Minnewaska (Jorgenson, Kuehne, E. Murken, Stai) 1:55.83… (16) Morris/Minnewaska (Roen, Edmunds, Reed, LeTendre) 2:06.71… (23) Morris/Minnewaska (Abigail Malek, Madi Solvie, Alyssa Klassen, Emma Dingman) 2:28.07

100 BACK – (3) Schoen 1:08.67… (16) Dougherty 1:12.87… (19) Obregon 1:18.64… (24) Avery Svec 1:33.66

100 BREAST – (7) E. Murken 1:20.88… (15) L. Murken 1:28.72… (22) Makenna Swalla 1:44.91

400 FREE RELAY – (7) Morris/Minnewaska (Schoen, Dougherty, Hufford, Stai) 4:12.18… (14) Morris/Minnewaska (Jorgenson, Roen, Obregon, Reed) 4:35.28… (19) Morris/Minnewaska (Malek, Stadtherr, Dingman, Svec) 5:14.92