The swimming season couldn’t have played out much better for Stephanie Bartel and Mallory Korenwinder.
Bartel, a Buchanan High School junior, set three Central Section records and went on to medal at the CIF State Swimming and Diving Championships.
“It was incredible to see the hard work I put into the season pay off,” Bartel said.
Korenwinder, a senior from Tulare Western, set a section record with an Olympic Trials-qualifying time and turned in the best individual placing for a section swimmer at the state meet.
“I was just going out there having fun and focusing on swimming fast,” Korenwinder said. “I just tried to put up some fast times and finish out strong.”
Bartel and Korenwinder are The Fresno Bee’s Co-Girls Swimmers of the Year. It’s the first such honor for Bartel, while Korenwinder was Co-Swimmer of the Year in 2014.
It was incredible to see the hard work I put into the season pay off.
Buchanan’s Stephanie Bartel, who set Central Section records in the 200 IM, 100 back and 100 free during the Division I championships
Bartel said she parlayed the added benefit of a week of training during the National Select Diversity Camp at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., and the support of family and friends into a record-setting day at the section’s Division I finals.
“The Colorado Springs camp helped me so much with my motivation and drive,” Bartel said. “And the constant support of family and friends. They were all calling and texting me before the meet wishing me luck. They all kept up with my swimming and cared. I knew I was swimming for more than myself. All of that went into my motivation for that meet. It was a great combination that worked out really well.”
Bartel started her day by helping Buchanan place second in the 200-yard medley relay (1:48.59), then outraced defending section champion Caitlyn Snyder of Clovis West to win the 200 individual medley. Bartel touched the wall in an All-America 2:02.38, more than two seconds faster than Snyder’s section record of 2:04.94 set in 2015.
In the 100 back, Bartel won her third consecutive section title with an All-America 55.08 that was more than four seconds faster than second-place Abby Samansky of Clovis West and more than a second better than the section record of 56.37 by Exeter’s Samantha Goates in 2008.
Bartel capped her day with a leadoff 100 leg of 50.60 in the 400 free relay, an All-America time that was 0.46 seconds faster than the section record of 51.06 set by Monache’s Kristie Begin in 1998 and more than a half-second better than 100 free champion Skylar Elkington of Clovis West, who, with Snyder, was The Bee’s Co-Swimmer of the Year in 2015.
Her times rank 52nd (100 back), 62nd (200 IM) and 65th (100 free) nationally among high school girls this season.
She reached the finals in both individual events at the state meet, placing sixth in the 200 IM (2:02.96) and eighth in the 100 back (55.54).
“I always wanted to do something that would leave a mark or impression, so people would know I was there,” Bartel said. “To be a record holder or in the record books, I feel so blessed to have that opportunity. I hope I can keep improving and doing things like that in the future.”
The Arizona-bound Korenwinder put an exclamation point on a four-year career that saw her capture eight section Division II gold medals by smashing the overall 100 breaststroke record.
Korenwinder swam a 1:01.14, 1.23 seconds faster than the section record set by Jorie Caneta of Division I Frontier in 2013. It also was the eighth-fastest 100 breaststroke time in the nation by a high school female this season.
“Knowing it’s that high was really cool,” Korenwinder said. “Every year being on that list is such an honor, and to be able to be in the top 10 is a great feeling. To think of all the high schools swimmers in the country that I have the eighth fastest time is phenomenal.”
The time gave Korenwinder her first berth in the U.S. Olympic Trials, where she placed 110th in the 100 meters in 1:12.96 on Monday.
To think of all the high schools swimmers in the country that I have the eighth fastest time is phenomenal.
Tulare Western’s Mallory Korenwinder, who set a section record in the 100 breaststroke of 1:01.14, eighth-fastest nationally for a high school female this season
“To go out and accomplish one of my dreams since I was 8 years old, I’m so excited,” Korenwinder said. “It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.”
Korenwinder also won the 100 butterfly in a consideration All-America 55.34 seconds (a time that was second overall when combined with those from D-I), and powered relay wins in the 200 IM (1:54.24, fifth overall) and 400 free (3:43.99, fourth overall) during the D-II finals.
At the state meet, Korenwinder earned the best individual finish for a Central Section swimmer by taking second in the 100 breaststroke (1:01.40), and she was ninth in the 100 fly in 55.05, the 74th fastest time in the nation this season.
She ended her career with four swims that were the fastest overall of the section finals, four that were second and two state medals. Korenwinder was fifth at state in the 100 breaststroke in 2015.
“Looking back and seeing how much I’ve grown since my freshman year, physically in the pool in times and mentally with my confidence, it’s been a great four years and fantastic to represent my school at Valley and at state the last couple of years,” Korenwinder said. “It was challenging at times, but I wouldn’t change it for anything.”
Girls and Boys Swimming Coach of the Year: Adam Reid
School: Clovis West
He’s qualified because: In his fifth season as the Golden Eagles’ coach, Reid constructed the lineups behind the girls’ 20th consecutive Central Section Division I championship and a boys team that won for the 17th time in 18 seasons. Clovis West’s girls placed 10th and the boys fifth at the CIF State Swimming and Diving Championships.
Girls dominance: The Golden Eagles had 13 swimmers combine for 24 top-eight finishes at the section finals, led by Skylar Elkington’s wins in the 50 and 100 free, and victories by the 200 and 400 free relays – teams made up of Elkington, Abby Samansky, Sarah Snyder and Caitlyn Snyder. Clovis West finished with 488 points, 122 ahead of second-place Clovis.
Boys return to top: After seeing a streak of 16 consecutive section titles snapped by Clovis in 2015, the Golden Eagles rode double victories from Matt Elkington (200 free and 100 fly) and Jacob Roberts (100 free and 100 back), as well as wins from Colby Evangelinos (diving) and the 200 medley relay team of Hunter Lane, Tom Schab, Preston Mayer and Austin Krietemeyer back to the top. Clovis West had 25 top-eight placings while outscoring second-place Buchanan 479.5-348.5.
Girls Swimming and Diving All-Stars
- Randi Berg, senior, diving, Clovis West
- Morgan Coddington, junior, 200 IM/500 free/200 medley relay/400 free relay, Kingsburg
- Adie Collard, junior, 200 free/100 free/200 medley relay/200 free relay, Clovis
- Skylar Elkington, junior, 50 free/100free/200 free relay/400 free relay, Clovis West
- Tenny Feigel, senior, 50 free/100 fly/200 medley relay/200 free relay, Sanger
- Savannah Fitzgerald, junior, 50 free/100 breast/200 medley relay/200 free relay, Clovis North
- Mackenzie Garza, freshman, 50 free/100 free/200 free relay/400 free relay, Golden West
- Lauren Geiger, junior, 100 fly/100 back/200 medley relay, Immanuel
- Jillian Hatch, senior, 200 free/500 free/400 free relay, Clovis
- Aubrey Holbert, senior, 100 fly/100 back/200 medley relay/200 free relay, Clovis North
- Kiree Lowe, junior, diving, Buchanan
- Emily Mayer, freshman, 200 IM/100 fly/200 medley relay, Clovis West
- Khloe McCarthy, senior, 200 free/500 free/200 medley relay/400 free relay, Tulare Western
- Audree Preble, senior, 200 IM/100 breast/200 medley relay, Clovis
- Averee Preble, freshman, 100 fly/500 free/200 medley relay/400 free relay, Clovis
- Megan Ridenour, freshman, 200 IM/200 breast/200 medley relay/200 free relay, Redwood
- Abby Samansky, freshman, 50 free/100 back/200 free relay/400 free relay, Clovis West
- Caitlyn Snyder, sophomore, 200 IM/100 breast/200 free relay/400 free relay, Clovis West
- Sarah Snyder, senior, 100 free/100 back/200 free relay/400 free relay, Clovis West
- McKayla Vuori, junior, 200 IM/100 free/200 free relay/400 free relay, Clovis