Blue Devil Timm-Ballard qualifies for state at MCC Invite

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RICHLAND — Wa-Hi swam to a second-place finish in a Mid-Columbia Invitational against Richland Tuesday night, 127-56.

“Richland is an incredibly strong team, one of the top in the state, and stacked with some great girls who perform very well in the water,” Wa-Hi coach Katharine Curles wrote in an email. “To get the 56 points that we achieved is, in itself, awesome.”

Emma Timm-Ballard had a big day for the Blue Devils, qualifying for a state berth with a second-place finish in the 100-yard backstroke (1:0.68), second only to Lisa Bratton (58.17), who swam in the Olympic trials.

Timm-Ballard also finished just 14-one-hundredths of a second off the state cut with a first-place 2:00.04 200 free.

“Emma is ... swimming better every day,” Curles said. “It will be a fun season for her!”

Wa-Hi’s Cheyenne Schoen beat out Nicole Weinman for first in the 100 breast with a 1:14.54 performance.

Miranda Ruff placed fourth with a personal record of 1:23.94 and Whitney Lux placed sixth with a 1:33.76.

“All three girls were neck-in-neck with their contenders and had great races,” Curles said. “Swimming outside with breaststroke at the end of the meet when it’s getting cold makes these achievements even more impressive, and set the stage for an incredible 400 freestyle relay.”

Wa-Hi won that 400 free relay with a 3:51.56 swim by Abby Crowley, Natalie Fink, Cheyenne Schoen and Timm-Ballard.

Wa-Hi faces Wenatchee Saturday at 1 p.m. in Whitman’s Harvey Pool for the Blue Devils’ first home meet of the year.

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