George Ferguson Havre Daily News sports editor email@example.com
There may only be three teams in Class A swimming, but that doesn't mean those three schools don't create a strong field when they al get together. And that's what happened on Saturday at the Class A Invitational in Hardin as the Havre High girls swim team captured the team title, while the HHS boys came in a narrow second. The Blue Pony girls finished the meet with a whopping 223 points to easily beat Hardin, which finished with 113 points, and Billings Central, which finished with 107 points. Individually, the Blue Ponies got six gold medals, including two from Kenzie Johnson. Johnson captured the 200- yard individual medley with a time of 2:35.52, while Logan Bunton and Mariah Armstrong finished third and fourth, respectively. Johnson also came in first in the 100-yard butterfly, just ahead of teammates Jessica Obrecht and Jessie Howland. Kacie Johnson was also outstanding, winning the 200-yard freestyle race with a time of 2:35.52, while Shelbee Friede finished third and Mersades Lodge came in fifth place in that race. Kacie Johnson also finished second in the 100-yard freestyle, Mary Beth Blankenship finished third and Sabrina Rhines was sixth. Blankenship also picked up a gold medal in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 1:14.72, while Armstrong finished third and Bunton was fifth. Obrecht captured the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:17.51 while Jamaica Kaercher was fourth and Pattie Hellman fifth. Kaercher also captured the grueling 500-yard freestyle race while Friede finished second, Howland fourth and Lodge sixth. All of the HHS girls also helped the Pony relay teams to a strong day. On the boys side, HHS just missed out on the team title. Hardin scored 148 points to the Ponies 144. Billings Central was a distant third with 65 points. Jake Lillivedt and Steve Barton had strong individual performances for HHS in Hardin. Lillivedt captured the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 1:14.35, and Matt Barton came in fourth. Lillivedt also finished third in the 200 freestyle while Barton was fifth and Colin Carlson was sixth. Carlson captured the 500-yard freestyle race for the Ponies. Steve Barton won the 50 freestyle for a third time this season, capturing the race in a time of 24.38. Barton was also second in the 100-yard breaststroke while Grayson Vukasin was fourth. DJ Stuker also finished second in both the 200 I'm and the 100-yard butterfly. The Ponies will be back in the pool on Saturday when they dual Great Falls High and CMR in Great Falls.