Grafton swimmers hope to build on success

Swim: Talent returns for Hawks, but they are forced to find a new practice venue
By 
MITCH MAERSCH
Ozaukee Press staff

Grafton High School qualified two swimmers for state last season, and coach Jonathan Lesniak hopes expand that number this year.

Both swimmer Olivia Konzen and diver Sophia Scolman are back to try to return to the final meet in Madison.

Konzen finished ninth in the Division 2 50-yard freestyle race last year.

“She’s a senior this year, she’ll do really well. We’ll get on the podium at state this year,” Lesniak said.

Scolman took last of 16 divers at state last year, but she was only a freshman.

“She took diving really seriously in the offseason with the club team. She’s going to do phenomenal this year as well,” Lesniak said.

The Black Hawks have about the same number of swimmers — the mid-20s — as last season, but have more depth and double the experience, he said.

“More girls are taking swimming seriously. I think we have a lot of contenders to make state this year,” Lesniak said.

Versatile sophomore Elaine Proefrock, “who we could place wherever we wanted last year,” will speclialize in sprint and mid-distance freestyle events, Lesniak said.

Junior Grace Hahm is back after taking fourth in the 200 individual medley in sectional competition last year.

Hahm, Proefrock, Konzen and sophomore Allison Garncarz took fourth in the 200 freestyle relay, and Garncarz, Proefrock, junior Maddy Hillner and Gabrielle Sparapani took fourth in the 400 freestyle relay. Sparapani is the only one from that group lost to graduation.

Junior Jaden Londo is slated to do the breast stroke races, and Lesniak said he likes that he can switch girls in and out of different events.

“We have a lot of versatile swimmers,” he said.

“Last year we built the base. This year we’re going to have a strong showing. They are establishing themselves as swimmers now.”

The Hawks’ venue is also still being established. The team began the season practicing at the Grafton Family Aquatic Center, which Lesniak planned to do for the first two weeks to change things up.

The high school pool’s boiler, however, was disconnected during the district’s renovation projects. In an oversight, the district didn’t order a new one in time for the season.

The Hawks were to practice at Homestead this week. Their first home meet is scheduled for Sept. 11. Where that will be hasn’t  yet been determined.
Grafton is scheduled to host the North Shore Conference meet Oct. 27.

After taking second place in a five-team meet on Aug. 18, the Hawks took second of three teams at the Plymouth triangular on Aug. 21.

Grafton scored 123 points to Plymouth’s 147. Sheboygan South scored 37.

The Hawks got two wins from Proefrock, one in the 200 individual medley in 2:30.97; and the other in the 500 freestyle in 5:50.18.

Hahm won the 100 backstroke in 1:13.18, and the 200 freestyle relay team of Proefrock, Garncarz, Hahm and Konzen won in 1:49.14.

Grafton was to swim at West Bend on Thursday and at Homestead on Sept. 6.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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