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Swimming: Tigers win Kennedy Invite

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Swimming: Tigers win Kennedy Invite
Farmington Minnesota P.O. Box 192 / 312 Oak St. 55024

The rest of the five-team field was no match for Farmington at Saturday's Kennedy Invitational at Oak Grove Middle School in Bloomington.

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The Tigers won eight of the meet's 12 events and racked up an even 800 points, 298 more than runner-up Red Wing's 502. Teams from Eau Claire North (394), Minneapolis Southwest/Henry (370) and Bloomington Kennedy (231) also competed.

All three relays went to the Tigers, starting with the 200 medley relay. Kirsten Kracke, Abby Haugen, Zoe Avestruz and Hannah Seitzinger swam to a time of 1 minute, 58.67 seconds to top second-place Red Wing by over four seconds.

Farmington's other three 200 medleys placed fifth, sixth and seventh, respectively.

The Tigers were just as dominant in the following event. Kaitlyn O'Reilly won the 200 freestyle in 2:04.91 and Cora Ruzicka (second), Ellie Sundet (fourth) and Chloe Holton (sixth) were close behind.

Zoe Avestruz made it three straight first-place efforts to start the meet by winning the 200 individual medley in 2:22.63. Avestruz went on to add an individual victory in the 100 backstroke and swim a leg of the first-place 200 freestyle relay, where she joined O'Reilly, Haugen and Kracke.

Kracke and Chelsea Gehrke came in 5-6 behind Avestruz in the 200 IM, and Robin Ellis followed with a fifth-place showing in the 50 freestyle.

Three more Tigers place highly in the 1-meter dive. Nikki Cayard led the way in second and Jade Alm and Kendall Novak were right behind, finishing fifth and sixth, respectively.

The Tigers came back with first-place showings in the next two events. O'Reilly and Seitzinger came in 1-4 in the 100 butterfly and Ruzicka, Sarah O'Reilly and Sara Kintner were 1-5-6 in the 100 freestyle.

Three more Farmington swimmers finished near the top in the 500 freestyle. Kracke finished second, followed by Sundet in third and Chloe Holton in fifth.

Holton came back to join Ellis, Sundet and Sarah O'Reilly for a second-place finish in the 200 freestyle. Sundet helped end the meet on a high note when she teamed up with Kaitlyn O'Reilly, Seitzinger and Ruzicka for a first-place finish in the 400 freestyle relay.

Haugen and Gehrke added a 2-3 finish in the 100 breaststroke and Delaney Wright placed third in the 100 backstroke.

The Tigers head to Grand Forks, North Dakota, this weekend for the University of North Dakota Invitational.

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Matt Steichen
Matt Steichen has been the sports editor at the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. He has previously been a sports writer at the Sioux City Journal and Le Mars Daily Sentinel and the sports editor at the Austin Daily Herald.
(651) 460-6606
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