Girls swimmers win Waukesha South Invite

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MTT News's picture
Rob Reischel
Makenna Licking and Middleton's girls swimming team won the Waukesha South Invite./Times-Tribune photo by Mary Langenfeld

Middleton’s girls swimming team has hit the halfway point of its regular season.

Really, though, the Cardinals have already done the majority of their heavy lifting.

Middleton’s schedule was front loaded and it came through with flying colors.

The Cardinals — who have won two straight WIAA Division 1 state championships and are heavy favorites to win a third — showed southeastern Wisconsin who’s boss on Sept. 15.

Middleton won the Waukesha South Invite with 367 points to easily outdistance runner-up Madison West (222.5). Waukesha South/Mukwonago (220), Cedarburg (204) and Arrowhead (197) rounded out the top five.

“The girls are as close to exhausted as you can get, but needed to be on top of their game against some of the state's best teams and individual swimmers,” Middleton coach Lauren Cabalka said. “Last week, we were able to see one half of the state and this week, the other half — both are equally as talented as each other. I thought the girls dug as deep as they could on their races and were able to hold off some really strong teams.”

Middleton’s quartet of senior Emily Keebler, sophomore Ally Silvestri, junior Gabriela Pierobon Mays and junior Berkley Smith won the 200-yard medley relay. The Cardinals’ 400-yard freestyle relay team of senior Hannah Aegerter, senior Makenna Licking, sophomore Bella Chirafisi and Pierobon Mays won the 400-yard freestyle relay.

And Middleton 200-yard freestyle relay team of senior Cora Mack, Chirafisi, Smith and Licking was second.

Licking was second in the 200-yard freestyle, Aegerter was fourth and Chirafisi was sixth. Pierobon Mays was second in the 100-yard backstroke and senior Emily Keebler was ninth.

Silvestri was second in the 100-yard breaststroke and Anagnostopoulos was fourth. Pierobon Mays was second in the 100-yard butterfly and sophomore Kaitlyn Peters was eighth.

Licking was also third in the 500-yard freestyle, Aegerter was fourth and freshman Amada George was 10th. Smith was fifth in the 50-yard freestyle and Chirafisi was seventh in the 100-yard freestyle. Silvestri was seventh in the 200-yard IM and junior Alex Anagnostopoulos was 10th.

“We had some breakthrough swims and season-best times as well as some that were very close to season bests,” Cabalka said. “When you can swim at that level, week after week, it's a sign of a very strong team. I'm proud of the way they competed and the improvements that were made from the week before. All in all, a solid weekend of swimming.” 

Middleton also rolled past Beloit Memorial, 139-31, on Sept. 14.

The Cardinals captured the top three spots in 10 of the 11 events.

“This was a good meet for us,” Cabalka said. “After a tough stretch, the girls were able to take a break from their main events and try something different. We had some really nice races and good relay events. It's always nice to mix it up a bit. We were one point away from a perfect score, which is pretty impressive when you're not swimming your top lineup.”

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