Knuth leads Panthers at Small School State

SHOREWOOD – Senior Taylor Knuth placed sixth in diving to lead the Plymouth Panthers in the very competitive Small School State Invitational girls swimming and diving meet here Saturday.

Knuth, who bounced back after a slow start, scored 311.65 points in the 11-dive event. The winner was freshman Ginger Lindgard of Edgewood with 415.90.

“She [Knuth] could have been in the top three with what she has already done this season. If she has to have an off-meet, this was the one to have it at,” said PHS diving coach Greg Heberlein.

“Now she can concentrate on conference and correcting the errors she had on Saturday. She will be fine.”

The Panthers placed 11th in a strong, 16-team field with 97 points. Grafton won the title with 346. Mc- Farland, last year’s Division 2 state runner-up, earned second with 297. McFarland won D-2 state championships in 2010 and 2011.

Shorewood, the defending D-2 state champion, was fifth with 190 points. The field included only D-2 schools.

The Panthers’ highest finisher in the swimming competition was the 200-yard freestyle relay which captured eighth with a time of 1 minute, 48.94 seconds. The relay members were seniors Delaney Olsen and Meghan Roelse and sophomores Anna Theisen and Nichole Bartzen.

“It was a good meet to see what swimmers are out there in Division 2 and what we’ll see in the sectional and state. This meet is a good measuring stick,” said Panther head coach Mike Slagle.

“We just didn’t have the horses to be able to place high in [swimming] events. The girls competed well. This was a strong field.”

PHS junior Maddy Schmitt and Theisen posted season-best times in the 100 breaststroke and 500 freestyle, respectively. Slagle said the rest of the swimmers were close to their season-best times.

Heberlein thought senior Haley Olsen and freshman Savannah Arneson had a good diving meet for the Panthers. Olsen took 12th and Arneson was 15th. The top-16 finishers in the diving and swimming events scored team points.

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