Girls swimming: Chesterton cruises to win over Munster
By Josh Lichtenfeld Post-Tribune correspondent January 24, 2013 11:12PM
Munster's Nikke Smith swims the backstroke leg of the 200 yd IM against Chesterton Thursday evening at Chesterton High School. | Jeffrey D. Nicholls~Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 26, 2013 6:41AM
Chesterton — The clock keeps ticking away before the start of next week’s girls swimming sectionals.
State ranked programs like Chesterton and Munster know this and also know the importance of maintaining a high energy level.
So, with Thursday, and another chapter of the annual rivalry between two of the region’s elite programs, came a chance to battle at a high level before the state tournament.
“It’s a good meet because it’s before sectionals for the girls,” said Chesterton coach Kevin Kinel after the Trojans rebounded from last year’s upset at Munster to turn things around at home, in a 112.5-73.5 romp. “If we didn’t have this meet it would be hard to stay motivated this week.”
Indeed the week before IHSAA action could be the calm before the storm for many, but not for these two teams. Each are favorites in their respective sectionals. And this time the Trojans won the battle, thanks to depth and some front end success.
Along with impressive pushes from the “B” relays, Chesterton took seven firsts. Seniors Julia Campbell (200 and 500 free, 1:53.35 and 5:02.58) and Kate Curley (100 back, 1:00.14) had season bests in their wins, while also contributing to the 400 free relay team’s win for the Trojans. And freshman Vanessa Krause also fueled that relay and showed poise with her pair of victories (50 free and the 100 fly, 24.27 and 56.33).
Improving to 11-0 in the regular season helps the vibe remain positive for the DAC team.
“We feel good that we’re swimming at our best right now and it matters,” Kinel said. “We’ve got to do the little things right, stay healthy and get ready for the postseason.”
Nikki Smith was a threat for the Seahorses, winning the 200 IM (2:07.88) and contributing to two relay firsts. Munster coach Matt Pavlovich pointed to Chesterton’s depth as a key.
“I think their girls (Chesterton) did very well,” he said. “I was impressed with Chesterton’s ‘B’ relays.”