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Girls Swimming: Metea freshman shines at sectional

IMSA's MarissBrock competes 200 yard freestyle during MeteValley Sectional. | Mike Mantucc~ For Sun-Times Media

IMSA's Marissa Brock competes in the 200 yard freestyle during the Metea Valley Sectional. | Mike Mantucca ~ For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: December 12, 2012 6:28AM

Metea Valley, which hosted a swimming and diving sectional for the first time this weekend, may not have won the meet, but the Mustangs did send out a strong signal that the program will be a prominent player in the future.

Metea’s Amanda Burson, a freshman who has been amazing teammates and opponents all season, won the 100 freestyle in a record time of 52.05. She also finished second to Waubonsie Valley junior Madeline Hunt in the 50 freestyle and swam on both the 200 medley and 200 freestyle relay teams that qualified for state.

The closely contested sectional was won by Naperville Central with 216 points to edge rival Naperville North, which finished with 205. Neuqua Valley wasn’t far back with 194, followed by Oswego East Co-op at 175. Benet and Rosary tied for fifth with 133, Metea Valley scored 105.5 and Waubonsie Valley 81.5

“It’s amazing,” said Burson. “I was just going for my best time and didn’t really expect to win. It was a little intimidating going against all the seniors. But, it’s such a big meet and I think all the energy around me made me perform better.”

“The sky’s the limit for Amanda,” said Metea Valley coach Lenny DePasquale. “ We still don’t know what her full capabilities are. She’s getting faster and faster and she loves the challenge, which is why she keeps pushing herself.”

To further prove that the future is exciting at Metea, Burson’s classmate and teammate Madie Sandberg also qualified in both sprint freestyle races and she was also a member of both qualifying relay teams.

“Amanda and I swim the same events,” said Sandberg. “So we’re able to push each other in practice and at meets.”

“For those two to do so well in the sprints and then to be part of two qualifying relays is fantastic,” said DePasquale. “But, as a team we had the meet of our lives today. Everyone was dropping times. It will be interesting how they do at state, because they haven’t experienced that kind of atmosphere.”

Metea Valley sophomore Hannah Davidsen qualified in the 100 backstroke

Hunt was one of the bright spots for Waubonsie Valley, as she also finished second in the 100 backstroke and she was a member of the qualifying 200 medley and the 200 freestyle relay teams.

Warriors sophomore Alexa Steffl and senior Melina Moussetis both qualified for state in the 100 breaststroke.

And Waubonsie’s Alyssa Gialamas swam four races, three freestyles and the breaststroke, marking the first time an athlete with a disability had the opportunity to participate in the state series.

Gialamas broke records for her disability class in the 50, the 100 and the 200 freestyle events.

Rosary, with a very young team, continues to rebuild on the fly, as the Beads qualified all three relays as well as individual swimmers.

Freshmen Annie Gosselin qualified in both the 200 IM and the 100 backstroke and Katie Rentz made it in both the 100 butterfly and the 100 breaststroke. Emma Kusczynski qualified in the 100 free.

Sophomores Erin Hart made it to state in the 100 freestyle and Kate Canfield qualified in the 100 backstroke.

“We had a good day,” said Rosary coach Bill Schalz. “We got a lot of kids in and they’re in good position to score.”

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