Riverside-Brookfield High School sophomore Hailey Vlcek had her fastest swimming performances at the end of last season.
She and the Bulldogs continue striving for yet another level.
Vlcek qualified for the 2021 IHSA state meet in two events and there again broke her RBHS school records that she had improved at sectionals.
Vlcek was 13th in the 200-yard freestyle (1:52.74), just .32 seconds from the 12-entry consolation finals, and 20th in the 100 free (52.59).
“We’re always looking at moving up at conference and sectionals,” RBHS coach Mike Laurich said. “We hope to get relay[s] to state as well as individuals swimming on Saturday at state [in the finals]. We need to work smart to achieve our goals.”
Seniors Aja McKay, Emma McVicker and Gemma Sambugaro and juniors Emily Baartman, Kate Ryan and Caroline Strubbe also return from the Sandburg Sectional lineup. Freshman Maria Ellis is among the top newcomers.
At last year’s sectional, the 400 free relay with McKay, McVicker and Vlcek was second (3:40.19). The 200 free relay with Vlcek, McKay and Ryan (1:39.39) and McKay (100 backstroke in 1:00.39) were third, 1.57 and 1.97 seconds from state-qualifying times.
The Bulldogs’ annual home invitational is Sept. 10.
LTHS girls swimming and diving
Senior and Illinois recruit Maggie Adler, senior Becky Phillips, junior Amelia Mariano and sophomore Audrey Cavaliere not only return with 2021 state experience but with competition in the IHSA state finals.
Adler, Phillips, Mariano and Cavaliere finished 10th in the 200 free relay (1:35.91) and Adler, Phillips and Mariano were part of the 11th-place 400 free relay (3:33.41). Both relays swam their second-fastest times in the consolation finals after season bests in the state preliminaries.
Other returning 2021 state qualifiers are Adler in the 50 free (29th, 24.26), the 200 medley relay with Mariano, senior Theo Calafeteanu, junior Avery Riley and Adler (21st, 1:48.65) and Riley (33rd in 200 individual medley, 2:16.79).
Seniors Mia DiBraccio and Avery Berg and sophomores Ella Jean Kelly and Grace Karan also return. Key newcomers include freshmen Maeve Collins, Lindsay Forebaugh, Kylie Thompson, Dylan Jorgensen and Bebe Wright.
The Lions play host to their annual invitational Sept. 10.
“I really think this is a group that you have to watch out for at the end of the season,” LTHS coach Scott Walker said. “They have a ton of potential and I’m excited to see what they can do in the next three months.”
Finishing second in last year’s Sandburg Sectional were Phillips in the 100 free (53.34), .48 from the state-qualifying cut, and 200 free (1:56.22), Mariano (50 free in 24.34), .27 from state qualifying, and Calafeteanu (100 breast stroke in 1:08.52). Berg and DiBraccio tied for second in the 100 butterfly (1:00.82).