DES MOINES — Despite missing two important pieces, the Perry girls swim team raced to a third-place finish in the Lonnie Kerman Polar Bear Invitational at Des Moines North Saturday.
Breanna Penenger and Vivian Gonzalez accompanied the Perry Blue Brigade to a band competition in Fort Dodge (both are drum majors), leaving the team with only eighth swimmers, two of whom rarely compete in varsity races. While the absence of the two veterans was clearly missed, it did not lessen the competitive edge for their teammates, who posted six personal-best efforts at the meet.
Storm Lake won the invite with 308 points, with Algona clipping Perry, 197-188, for second place. Oskaloosa (who will join Newton in visiting Perry Tuesday) was fourth at 163, with DM Hoover (111) and host DM North (102) rounding out the field.
Sarah Vaughn, Anna Ridnour, Dannah Karolus and Amanda Holwegner started the meet for Perry by placing fourth in the 200 medley relay in 2 minutes, 19.01 seconds.
Avery Miner was sixth in the 200 freestyle (2:34.53), with Ridnour fifth, in 2:46.14, and Abby Herman seventh, in 2:55.94, in the 200 individual medley.
Holwegner touched eighth in the 50 free in 30.97, with Shekynah Haworth 12th in a personal best (PB) 42.02. Kimberly Valdez had a PB in the JV 50 free, finishing in 45.51.
Karolus shaved an impressive 2.22 seconds off her previous best to place second in the 100 butterfly in 1:11.75, with Herman placing fourth in the 100 free in 1:07.28.
Sarah Vaughn chopped 3.31 ticks off her prior best to claim the 500 free in 6:15.58, with Avery Miner fifth in 6:49.75.
Ridnour, Holwegner, Herman and Karolus had a strong 1:58.88 to finish second in the 200 free relay, with Vaughn fourth, in 1:20.98, and Haworth ninth, in 1:44.96 (a new PB) in the 100 backstroke.
Holwegner lopped an amazing 4.37 seconds for a new PB in the 100 breaststroke of 1:27.11 with Ridnour touching in 1:27.36. The pair were eight and ninth, respectively.
The Jayettes were the runner-up in the final event of the meet, the 400 free relay. Vaughn, Miner, Herman and Karolus swam for Perry, clocking in at 4:26.45.
Tuesday’s meet with visiting Newton and Oskaloosa will begin at 6:30 p.m. at the MCB pool. Perry will then be off until joining Oskaloosa and Williamsburg at Grinnell Oct. 3.