Girls swim team has high hopes for the season

By Aleah Stenberg

With two weeks of preseason training finished, the Big Lake Swimming and Diving team is ready for their first game of the season at Foley Tuesday (Aug. 27). There are 49 girls on the team this year, the largest team Head Coach Brittany Gronewald can recall. This is Gronewald’s fourth year coaching the swim team, and second as head coach. “We’re really excited for the season,” stated Gronewald. “We have a lot of great leadership on the team and the younger ones have a lot of energy and want to learn. They’ve bonded well already and have great team chemistry.” Returning letter winners include Team Captains Cassie Jahn, Kelli Poffenberger, Sydney Butalla and Erin Ralph as well as Lauren Ireland, Sara Rebrovich, Morgan Turk, Clare Adams, Lily Noble, Laurel Pietrzak, Jordyn Robarge, Cacia Stanley-Sanford, Madison Starr, Lara Wellumson, Hannah Wessel, Maggie Knier, Laurin Ebert and Helena Lingasin. Two new coaches have joined the team this season, Assistant Coach Mary Walsh and Diving Coach Dick Adams. Also assisting Gronewald for the second year is Alyssa Freichels. The swimmers hope to bring their largest team to True Team State this year. Two years ago the team made it to True Team State, a meet that the team qualifies for with everyone’s accumulated points throughout the season, and they’d like to make it back this season. The Big Lake Swimming and Diving Team will be holding a mini golf tournament fundraiser at McPete’s Sun., Sept. 8, starting at 2 p.m. The money raised will go towards new warm-ups. Student admission is $5. Adults are $10. The first home meet will be the Relay Invitational Sat., Sept. 7, at 10 a.m. against teams from Becker, Cambridge-Isanti, Monticello, Foley, Sauk Rapids-Rice and New Prague.

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(From left) Lexi Freund (Big Lake), Betsey Cornelius and Ben Cornelius (Nowthen), Gunner Dorweiler and Colton Dorweiler (Princeton), Ben Manning (Zimmerman), Bailey Dorweiller (Princeton) and Salene Krueger (Big Lake.) The county fair runs from July 16-19. (Photo by Ken Francis.)

Dr. Lola Sutherland is retiring from clinical practice after 33 years in the Big Lake community. (Photo by Jennifer Edwards.)

SMITTY’S AMATEUR FIDDLERS CONTEST drew 22 musicians to compete in Big Lake this year. They were accompanied by Gilmore Lee.

LEE GERHARDSON, 47, from New London, was found dead in Big Lake near the swimming beach in 10 feet of water Monday. Cause of death is unknown at this time but foul play is not suspected.

Adopt-a-Road participants volunteer for Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) and work to clean roadsides that border and bisect refuge land. This spring, from April to June, approximately six individuals, three families, and seven groups, such as boy and girl scouts and 4-H groups, volunteered to clean countless miles of roads. (Submitted photo.)