Elliott column: Sabres gear up for true-team

Elliott column: Sabres gear up for true-team


Elliott column: Sabres gear up for true-team



The goal at the state boys swimming and diving true-team championships is to get on the podium and secure some hardware.

St. Thomas Academy will win, guaranteed.

“They are a dynasty,” Sartell head coach Jay Anderson said. “I don’t think any other school has ever won it (the state true-team meet).”

The Sabres take 37 athletes to the state Class A true-team championships Saturday at the University of Minnesota Aquatics Center.

“The boys should be in it,” Anderson said. “We’d sure love to get a medal out of it.

“We’ll have to swim well to come out with a second or third place. We’ll have to be on our game Saturday.”

Breck/Blake also should be strong.

Anderson also is concerned with teams from Alexandria, Monticello and Melrose/Sauk Centre. But if everything breaks right, second or third are achievable.

“There are more teams in it this year, which could be good for us,” Anderson said.

There are 12 teams competing, six section champions plus six wild cards.

Because of Sartell’s depth and ability to have multiple individuals and relays finish in the top half, the Sabres should pass up more teams and earn more points.

“Every single guy scores and that might break our way in the end just because of the sheer number of people in the top five,” Anderson said. “Our relays look good, too.”

Ninth-grader Mitchell Dockendorf is seeded high in the 200 medley relay and the 100 backstroke.

Senior captain Ian Lawson will be another big scorer, specially in the 100 breaststroke.

Senior Connor Hollingsworth will score points in the 100 butterfly.

Anderson expects junior Chad Peichel, who anchors several relays, to be another fast swimmer Saturday.

Because of Peichel’s speed, Anderson said Sartell is able to move one of his fastest swimmers, senior Trever Nordlund, into several B relays.

That helps those B relays finish well, scoring more points.

The 37 athletes attending is a tie for the largest squad Anderson has had in his five years as head coach.

And the future is good. There are 27 seventh- and eighth-graders competing in middle school.

“I’m excited about the future of the program,” he said.

For now, a second- or third-place trophy coming back to Sartell on Saturday night would be really nice.


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