It’s the 2023 IHSA Girls Swimming and Diving State Meet, as the fans are out at FMC Natatorium in Westmont. Local schools such as Neuqua Valley, Waubonsie Valley, Naperville North, and Benet Academy look to wrap up the season on a high note. This highlight is sponsored by BMO.
The day starts with the 200-yard Medley Relay
The 200-yard medley relay starts things off as we begin with the first heat. The Redwings team of Lucy Rooney, Imogen Duffey, Paige Malinowski, and Clare Donnelly take eighth place, as Edwardsville grabs first place.
In the championship heat, the Neuqua Valley team of Natalie Sierzanowksi, Ruhee Chetan, Emily Wu, and Sophia Labarre also takes eighth. New Trier takes first with a time of 1:42.04, and Rosary comes in second.
Reese Navarro shines again
Onto the athletes with disabilities races, as we start in the 200-yard free, Naperville North sophomore Reese Navarro competes in her second state meet, after winning the 200-yard free and 100-yard breaststroke last season. She finishes in second place this year in the 200-yard free, just behind Savannah Zirbel.
Navarro would go on to get third place in this 50-yard freestyle race, and another third-place finish in the 100-yard free. Thanks to three podium finishes from Navarro, Naperville North was able to secure a team third place in the combined Athletes with Disabilities and able-bodied swimmers division.
Neuqua Valley’s Emily Wu and Benet’s Imogen Duffy compete in the 200-yard Individual medley as they battle it out. In the end, Duffy claims the first spot in the first heat and the seventh fastest time across both heats.
In the all-intense 50-yard freestyle, the fastest of all races, Fremd’s Katie Kuehn, whose long reach touches the wall just before Tessalina Stavropoulos for first place in the championship heat.
Two local divers finish the season strong
Katie Malm is the first on the diving board as she attempts a reverse one-and-one-half summersault tuck. Malm finishes in fourth place. Xara Gin is up, and her triple summersault on this dive helps her get 16th place at state.
Packed with local teams, Naperville North, Benet, and Waubonsie Valley, compete in the first heat in the 200-yard freestyle relay. The Huskies in lane five with Tasha Mantel, Lauren Malko, Abby Pobozny, and Chloe Chen, pull away from St. Ignatius in a tight finish to win the heat and take 9th overall. Benet Academy finishes 16th, but sets a new school record with Lucy Rooney, Gisele Buchar, Imogen Duffy and Clare Donnelly.
Neuqua Valley, in the second heat, finishes in seventh behind Sophia Labarre, Ruhee Chetan, Elizabeth Rosenberg, and Crystal Yu. The Rosary Beads, who beat the IHSA record with a time of 1:32.45, come in first thanks to Olivia Moore, Becky Rentz, Bella Wojtowitcz, and Aryana Nieckula.
Competing in their third event of the afternoon, Donnelly and Duffy are in the first heat of the 100-yard breaststroke where they finish in seventh and eighth. Ella Jean Kelly for Lyons Township takes first place
Nearing the end of the state events, it’s the second heat of the 100-yard breaststroke. Rosary’s Elizabeth Nawrocki takes first place as Chetan for Neuqua and Mantel for Naperville North take seventh and eighth respectively.
Valley schools end the season in a close race
The final event of the afternoon, the longest of them all, is the 400-yard freestyle relay and we got the first heat here. Neuqua Valley gives it their all with Crystal Yu, Emily Wu, Sophia Labarre, and Ruhee Chetan as the Wildcats take second place, and Waubonsie Valley with Calin Ball, Malini Madiman, Ruby Meier, and Anna Honcharuk claim sixth.
Rosary Beads win the IHSA Girls Swimming State Championship
In the end, it’s Rosary who claims their eighth IHSA Girls Swimming State Championship as they outlast the 2022 champs, New Trier. Neuqua Valley takes 12th overall. The Oswego/Oswego East Co-Op wins the 2023 combined school State Championship.
For more prep sports highlights, visit the Naperville Sports Weekly page!