October 14, 2010 at 9:25 a.m.
Just like last year, CL had to travel down to St. Louis Park, who features a small four-lane pool with no diving board.
Head Coach Ed Wakefield knew that would be a disadvantage for his team, as he felt going into the meet the 'Cats had more depth than St. Louis Park, and plus, they would sweep the diving points since the Orioles don't feature any divers.
But, it's how the schedule worked out, and the girls had to swim the meet and try to knock off St. Louis Park as the conference champs.
Things got off to a slow start for Chisago Lakes, though. They are accustomed to taking one of the top spots in the 200 medley relay most of the time, but St. Louis Park had two fast teams take first and second. Chisago Lakes was relegated to third and fourth, and that meant a quick 9-1 lead for St. Louis Park.
The 'Cats kept it even through the next two events as they finished first and fourth in each event, but couldn't nab the second or third spots. Thomi Lee took down the 200 freestyle event, and Brogan Lee won the 200 individual medley.
The Orioles widened the gap to 14 points when they took first and second in the 50 freestyle, out-scoring the Wildcats by six points.
That would be the tone-setter for the whole night, as Chisago Lakes was able to keep it even in most of the events, but when they lost one, they lost it big.
Brogan Lee took first in the 100 butterfly, but a fourth place finish by Amanda Bean meant a 4-4 tie in the event, and CL couldn't make up any ground.
Then, in the 100 freestyle, the Orioles got one of their big wins, going first and second and stretching the lead to 35-15.
Thomi Lee won the 500 freestyle with a time of 5:25, but again, SLP went two-three behind her, and the 'Cats earned a stalemate in the event.
St. Louis Park put the nail in the coffin with back-to-back wins in the 200 freestyle and the 100 backstroke. With six more points added to their already large lead, the Orioles went to swimming exhibition for the last two events.
The result was frustrating for the girls and for Wakefield. This is one of the most talented teams that has ever swam in the Chisago Lakes pool, and both last year and this year, a bad draw in the schedule relegated them to second place behind St. Louis Park.
The Wildcats still face off against Irondale in North Suburban Conference action, but they haven't had much trouble with Irondale in years.
Commenting has been disabled for this item.