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Bemidji diver Hedstrom ends her run at state meet

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Jana Hedstrom's stay at the Class A state diving competition came to an end Thursday as the Bemidji junior was 23rd after the first round of diving and failed to qualify for the second round.

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Only the top 20 divers following the first five dives advanced to the second round. Those divers performed three more dives Thursday and the field was then cut to the 16 who will compete for state honors on Saturday.

Today's schedule sees Lexie Hendricks and Steph Frey competing in the swimming preliminaries.

Hendricks will swim in the 500 free while Frey will compete in the 200 free and 100 breast stroke.

Today's top 16 finishers will compete again on Saturday. The ninth through 16th swimmers qualify for Saturday's consolation round while today's top-eight finishers will earn all-state status and compete in the championship heat.

"Jana didn't nail her first dive on Thursday and she couldn't bounce back," said BHS coach Woody Leindecker. "She scored 121.95 on her five dives and wasn't far behind the scores of the top-20 divers but she couldn't catch them."

Placing 20th after the first round was Emily McIntire of Sartell who scored 124.85.

Had Hedstrom qualified for the second round Leindecker believes that the BHS diver would have continued her move into the top-16.

"With the degree of difficulty Jana has with her next three dives, I think she would have snuck into the top-16 and would be diving again on Saturday," Leindecker said.

"But you have to be at your best to succeed at the state meet," the coach continued. "If you are off just a little bit you won't make the finals. And Jana was off a little bit Thursday."

Kyley Foster of Detroit Lakes, who won the Section 8A meet, last weekend, was 15th after Thursday's two rounds with a score of 200.95. Tori Raihle of Spring Lake Park leads the Class A field with a score of 298.10.

Leindecker added that Hendricks and Frey both had strong swims during Thursday's warm-up sessions and appear ready to challenge the leaders today.

"They are both looking good," Leindecker said.

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Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

(218) 333-9200
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