December 2, 2004 at 7:41 a.m.

McGurk, Trudeau finish their season with a splash

McGurk, Trudeau finish their season with a splash
McGurk, Trudeau finish their season with a splash

It's the perfect way to end the season.  At state, on the final day, competing in the final races of the season, and in some cases, the final race of their career.  That was the case for Molly McGurk, the Wildcats senior breaststroker who advanced to last Wednesday's consolation final with a 13th place finish in prelims two days earlier.  The senior had made it to the pinnacle of high school swimming. 

Once the finals came, McGurk had nothing to prove. Even so, McGurk swam a spirited race, coming in 14th overall, swimming the race in just under 1:12.  Although her finals time was a shade lower than what she swam during prelims, McGurk was still able to post one of the best times of the season.

“What a year.  She came on so strong at the end,” said Ed Wakefield, Chisago Lakes head girls swimming coach.  “She was probably a little disappointed that she didn't swim faster at state, but she swam so fast at sections, it's really hard to do it again.”

In all, McGurk was one of 12 swimmers who traveled to the state meet.  Earlier that week during prelims, all three Chisago relay teams failed to qualify for the finals, despite swimming record races.  In the 400 freestyle relay, the Wildcats relay team set a new school record, as did the 200 freestyle relay team.  Their time of 1:45.14 set a new school record, breaking their section tournament time. 

Then there was McGurk who completed her senior year with a bang, strutting her stuff with some of the best swimmers in the state.

“She got to state and she placed,” replied Wakefield.  “It was really awesome to watch.  She's such a great leader, she leads by example.  She deserved everything she got.”

McGurk wasn't the only Wildcat to make waves last Wednesday during the finals of the class “A” state swimming and diving meet.  On the diving board, junior Lauren Trudeau moved up one spot from the semifinals, finishing 12th overall with a score of 296.70.  Blake's Julie Brummond won the meet with a 418.20.

“She did awesome, I mean what a meet for her,” commented Wakefield. “That was really neat, she is such a great kid.”

She didn't dive like a kid.  After finishing 20 after prelims, Trudeau began her climb northward in the semifinals, moving up to 13th place heading into Wednesday.  During the final round, the junior continued to impress, moving up one spot and coming within two points of 11th place. Even though Trudeau didn't medal (top eight medal), she put the rest of the state on notice- next year, she'll be a senior.

All in all, Wakefield couldn't have been happier with the way the meet turned out. Despite losing several seniors from last year's championship squad, the Wildcats re-grouped, winning the section title for the third straight season.

The Wildcats re-loaded when they were expected to re-build.

“When we graduated the kids that we did, we knew it was going to be tough but we really had some kids step up,” said Wakefield.  “We did it as a team.  Just how we won sections, it was a total team effort. That's what did it for us.”

State Swimming and Diving Results

Class A- Team Results (Top 5):

1. Hutchinson 209

2. Benilde-St. Margaret's 182

3. Blake 175

4. Northfield/ARTech 159

5. Visitation 141

31. Chisago Lakes 8

Individual Results (CL only):

200 Medley Relay:

Preliminaries-

21. Chisago Lakes 1:58.81

*eliminated after preliminaries

Diving:

12. Lauren Trudeau 296.70

*Erica Greene 130.10

*eliminated after preliminaries

200 Freestyle relay:

Preliminaries-

*23. Chisago Lakes 1:45.14

*eliminated after preliminaries

100 Breaststroke:

Preliminaries-

13. Molly McGurk 1:11.09

Finals-

14. Molly McGurk 1:11.96

400 Freestyle Relay:

*19. Chisago Lakes 3:50.83

*eliminated after preliminaries


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