Witt-Birn girls swim team edges Shawano in meet

Metropulos, Resch each win two individual events for Chargers
Morgan Rode
Sports Editor

Updated: Sept. 4, 2:15 p.m.

The Wittenberg-Birnamwood High School girls swim team claimed a tight 86-82 win in a meet against Shawano on Thursday in Shawano.

The meet was considered a nonconference one, even though it featured two Bay Conference teams. The teams will swim their Bay meet on Oct. 6 in Wittenberg.

Despite no fans in attendance because of the Bay’s COVID guidelines this fall, there was still plenty of energy and excitement around the pool, as the meet came down to the final event of the night.

Witt-Birn’s 400-yard freestyle relay team of Emma Herb, Alexa Chaney, Annika Resch and McKenna Metropulos took first in 4 minutes, 14.22 seconds to secure the win for the visitors.

The top finish from the Witt-Birn relay was the team’s ninth first-place finish across the 11 varsity events.

Metropulos had a big individual night for the Chargers, winning the 200 IM (2:21.28) and 100 butterfly (1:00.12). Her time in the 100 butterfly broke the school record, which she already held.

“I was pretty happy with my 100 fly and breaking my own record. I was hoping to go under a minute so that was a little disappointing, but it was a personal record no less,” said Metropulos. “I’m super excited for the rest of the season and am super thankful that our conference was able to come together and figure out a way to make this season happen.”

Resch also picked up a pair of first-place finishes. Resch (1:00:33) edged Shawano’s Isabel Colon (1:02.69) in the 100 freestyle. Resch posted a top time of 1:22.73 in the 100 breaststroke, an event Witt-Birn had the top three finishers in.

Olyvia Stark and Emma Herb had Witt-Birn’s other individual top finishes. Stark won the 200 freestyle (2:27.61), while Herb finished just ahead of Shawano’s Macy Monfils in the 50 freestyle (30.57 to 31.31).

Stark, Resch, Metropulos and Chaney teamed up to take first in the 200 medley relay, the first event of the meet. The Chargers 200 freestyle relay team of Herb, Stark, Jessica Storlie and Chaney placed first in 2:00.74.

Chaney placed second in the 500 freestyle (6:59.8), while Jalynn Horacek swam to second in the 100 breaststroke (1:29.63).

“Even though we are a smaller team, this meet showed us that we can win meets against teams bigger than us,” said Metropulos. “It’s a great confidence booster.”
While the top finishes were hard for Shawano to come by, the hosts kept the meet close because of their higher number of swimmers in each event.

Gabi Bukoski and Colon posted Shawano’s first-place finishes.

Bukoski eased to a win in the 500 freestyle in 6:22.11, while Colon posted a time of 1:15.97 to take first in the 100 backstroke, just ahead of teammate Alli Brown (1:16.45).

“I was very excited to swim the 500 as it is my favorite event and I haven’t been able to swim it since February when swim club season ended,” said Bukoski. “I had a lot of adrenaline when I dove in the pool that carried me to the finish. It may not have been my best time, but it was a good starting point for me this season.”

Brown, Bukoski, Colon and Monfils teamed up in the 200 medley relay, posting a time of 2:10.59 for second place. Allison Langlois joined Colon, Bukoski and Monfils on the second-place finishing 400 freestyle relay team (4:34.72).

Langlois, Brown, Lydia Quandt and Anne Carrier formed Shawano’s 200 freestyle relay team that took second in 2:02.75.

Bukoski was second in the 200 IM (2:43.61), while Rose Bunker took second in the 200 freestyle (2:52.29). Carrier claimed second in the 100 butterfly (1:20.99).