Girls swimming: Stevenson takes 4th, Barrington 10th at state meet

  • Stevenson anchor Izzie Gattone celebrates the Patriots' win in the 200-yard freestyle relay during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Stevenson anchor Izzie Gattone celebrates the Patriots' win in the 200-yard freestyle relay during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • New Trier's Charlize Escasa swims breaststroke in the 200-yard medley relay during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      New Trier's Charlize Escasa swims breaststroke in the 200-yard medley relay during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Barrington's Jenna Kerr leaves the starting block in the 200-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Barrington's Jenna Kerr leaves the starting block in the 200-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Barrington's Jenna Kerr swims the 200-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Barrington's Jenna Kerr swims the 200-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Clockwise from left, Stevenson's Milena Busma, Jenn Chen, Stephanie Kirova and Abby Collins congratulate fellow competitors at the 200-yard medley relay awards stand during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Clockwise from left, Stevenson's Milena Busma, Jenn Chen, Stephanie Kirova and Abby Collins congratulate fellow competitors at the 200-yard medley relay awards stand during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Libertyville backstroker Sofija Tijunelis leaves the starting block in the consolation heat of the 200-yard medley relay during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Libertyville backstroker Sofija Tijunelis leaves the starting block in the consolation heat of the 200-yard medley relay during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Barrington divers Sofia Rosenweig, left, and Ember Stenneett stand together during the awards presentation during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Barrington divers Sofia Rosenweig, left, and Ember Stenneett stand together during the awards presentation during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Palatine's Riley Strahl dives during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Palatine's Riley Strahl dives during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Stevenson's Lada Volkov during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Stevenson's Lada Volkov during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Stevenson's Milena Busma swims the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Stevenson's Milena Busma swims the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Barrington's Jenna Kerr swims the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Barrington's Jenna Kerr swims the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Barrington's Jenna Kerr views her time after winning the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Barrington's Jenna Kerr views her time after winning the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Crystal Lake South's Avery Watson swims in the consolation heat of the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Crystal Lake South's Avery Watson swims in the consolation heat of the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Hinsdale Central's Burlingtyn Bokos, left, shakes hands with event winner Jenna Kerr of Barrington at the conclusion of the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Hinsdale Central's Burlingtyn Bokos, left, shakes hands with event winner Jenna Kerr of Barrington at the conclusion of the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Stevenson's Milena Busma leaves the starting block in the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Stevenson's Milena Busma leaves the starting block in the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Stevenson's Milena Busma swims the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Stevenson's Milena Busma swims the 100-yard butterfly during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Barrington's Jenna Kerr swims the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Barrington's Jenna Kerr swims the 500-yard freestyle during the IHSA girls state swimming and diving finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Rolling Meadows' Vera Conic swims the 100-yard backstroke during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Rolling Meadows' Vera Conic swims the 100-yard backstroke during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Rolling Meadow's Vera Conic, left, and New Trier's Tierney Lenahan tied for first in the 100-yard backstroke during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

      Rolling Meadow's Vera Conic, left, and New Trier's Tierney Lenahan tied for first in the 100-yard backstroke during the IHSA girls state swimming finals at FMC Natatorium in Westmont on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

 
By Gregg Voss
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 11/12/2022 7:22 PM

Like father, like daughter.

Curt Bendell, Palatine's girls diving coach, was himself an Illinois state diving champion back in the early 1980s.

 

On Saturday, he got to watch his daughter, Cary-Grove junior Maggie Bendell, win her first state title in that event, with 462.50 points, well ahead of Glenbrook South senior Jacki Stadler, with 450.80.

"It's unbelievable to be honest with you," the proud parent said. "Maggie puts in a lot of hard work and to see her do that is wonderful. It's a really good feeling."

For his daughter's example, winning was just a matter of envisioning the state meet as just another practice, or even midseason event.

"In a big meet like this, I try to relax and have fun and not be stressed over it, just dive like you do in practice," Maggie Bendell said. "Having people to talk to and distract yourself almost really helps."

On the swimming side, Rolling Meadows freshman Vera Conic had perhaps the most interesting day of anybody. She tied for the state title in the 100-yard backstroke, logging the same 55.09 seconds as New Trier sophomore Tierney Lenahan.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"That was the best ending I could have asked for," Conic said. "I was like, This is crazy. I've heard of her (Lenahan) and I'm like, This is going to be a hard race, and I think winning together is really cool."

Stevenson was in a mix of four schools vying for the team title. The Patriots took fourth with 123.50 points, pretty darn close to third-place finisher St. Charles North, with 128. New Trier won the title with 149.50 points.

Among the afternoon highlights for Stevenson was the 200 freestyle relay, which won in 1:33.06, a shade better than Hinsdale Central (1:33.65). The Patriots' entry consisted of senior Abby Collins, junior Stephanie Kirova, freshman Linnea Florin and senior Izzie Gattone.

The four were all smiles post-race, having a hard time coming to grips with the fact that they were indeed state champions.

"It's really surreal," Gattone said. "I knew I was going to be racing next to (Hinsdale Central's) Kit Schneider, who won the 50 free. At the end of the day, when I was up there, I was thinking about my team and how much I wanted to win it for them."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Kirova contributed to her team's placement by taking fifth in the 50 freestyle (23.35), while senior Milena Busma was third in the 100 butterfly (54.64). Junior Jennifer Chen was fourth in the 100 backstroke (55.63).

Barrington was the 10th place finisher with 49 points, one behind Lyons. The Fillies were paced by senior Jenna Kerr, who led wire-to-wire in the 500 freestyle, and came within 1:57 of setting a state record.

But that's not all. Kerr gave it her best shot in the 200 freestyle, and took second to Deerfield junior Annika Parkhe, who set the state record in 1:45.60. Kerr recorded a time of 1:47.62.

Fremd junior Katie Kuehn took third in the always-tough 50 freestyle with a time of 23.08, just .06 behind runner-up Tessalina Stavropoulos.

"Every time before my race, I have to take a deep breath and calm my nerves," Kuehn said. "The 50, pretty much anything can go wrong. It's a lot of just trusting my training."

0 Comments
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 
Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.