Railer swimmer qualifies for state in two events

Mark Schnabel
The Kansan
Newton High School swimmer Madison Horton qualified for state in the 200-yard individual medley and 500-yard freestyle Friday in the season opener at Wichita Heights.
Newton swimmer Acacia Penner competes in the backstroke leg of the 200-yard medley relay at the Wichita Heights Invitational.
Newton swimmer Libby Crawford competes in the breaststroke leg of the 200-yard medley relay at the Wichita Heights Invitational.
Newton swimmer Lauren Anton competes in the butterfly leg of the 200-yard medley relay Friday at the Wichita Heights Invitational.

PARK CITY — In the season opener, the Newton High School girls’ swimming team claimed two automatic state qualifying entries and four state consideration times (provisional qualifiers) Friday at the Wichita Heights Invitational.

The Railers finished eighth out of 16 teams in the team standings. Derby won the meet at 326 points, followed by Maize at 250, Winfield at 240, Wichita Trinity Academy at 214.5 and Garden City at 179. Newton scored 152 points.

“If nothing else, this gives them motivation,” Newton coach Kim Powell said. “They see what we’re up against. The girls see that it’s going to take a team effort.”

The first win of the season for the Railers came in the 200-yard individual medley, where Madison Horton finished in 2:20.73, breaking the automatic state qualifying time of 2:31.95.

Lauren Anton was sixth in 2:34.50, breaking the state consideration time (secondary qualifying time) of 2:39.55.

Horton led the first half of the 500-yard freestyle, but faded down the stretch to finish third in 5:50.93, breaking the automatic state qualifying time of 5:58.25. Anton finished fifth in 6:01.11, breaking the state consideration time of 6:16.17.

“I feel like there are some things I can work on and get better,” Horton said. “I feel like I did pretty good for the first meet of the season. Towards the end (of the 500 freestyle), I realized I went out too fast and needed a little more control at the beginning. It’s been a while since I swam the 500 free.”

Horton, a sophomore, was making her high school debut. Her freshman season got canceled because of the COVID-19 outbreak. She was able to swim in some club meets.

“Two weeks in, we got canceled before our first meet,” Horton said. “I am a club swimmer. I’ve had a good amount of years under my belt to prepare me for this. We didn’t get many meets with club this year, but we did get a lot of dry-land practice or finding a pool still open.”

She recently competed in the U.S. Swimming Missouri Valley Meet.

“I was able to cut some times, so I was really proud of that,” Horton said. “I didn’t get any top 10s, but I was really close to the top 10.”

Acacia Penner took third in diving with a score of 162.65. Ashley Hoffman was sixth in 127.50.

The 400-yard freestyle relay team of Anton, Penner, Libby Crawford and Horton placed sixth in 4:15.96. The team broke the state consideration time of 4:25:06 and missed the automatic qualifying time by 3.52 seconds.

The 200-yard medley relay team of Penner, Libby Crawford, Anton and Horton finished in ninth place in 2:11.93, breaking the state consideration time of 2:14.52. The team was 3.81 seconds off the automatic qualifying time.

“I am super, super proud of these girls,” Powell said. “Maddie just blew it out of the water for us. … Some of the girls have never swam before, and their times from trials to now have improved. They still have some things to smooth out. They worked really hard in practice, so we’re excited to put things into place and see what happens. It looks like we finished eighth, and I’m happy with that.”

Newton competes Thursday at Salina South, followed by Wichita Northwest Friday (diving) and Saturday (swimming). 


200-yd. medley relay — Newton B (Elena Vanderweg, Kyndal Dorzweiler, Ylia Lopez, Anna Harder) 2:38.20-x.

200-yd. freestyle — 17. Libby Crawford 2:33.16, 26. Anna Harder 2:55.54.

50-yd. freestyle — 28. Addison Penner 35.49, 39. Lindsey Warsnak 39.25, 43. Preslee Ellette 40.73.

100-yd. butterfly — 18. Libby Crawford 1:29.17, 21. Ylia Lopez 1:33.45.

100-yd. freestyle — 26. Elena Vanderweg 1:15.95, 33. Sarah Koehn 1:19.66, 41. Rebekah Allen 1:25.88.

500-yd. freestyle — 19. Kyndal Dorzweiler 8:04.66.

200-yd. freestyle relay — Newton B (Preslee Ellette, Karly Archibald, Evelyn Gaetner, Katherine Herbel) 2:57.83-x.

100-yd. backstroke — 37. Leigh Jones 1:58.50.

100-yd. breaststroke — 31. Lindsey Warsnak 1:48.64, 40. Karlyn Archibald 2:03.06.

400-yd. freestyle relay — Newton B (Rebekah Alle, Kamryn Archibald, Sarah Koehn, Maryanne Ballinger) 5:39.10-x.

Mark Schnabel can be reached at mschnabel@thekansan.com