Returning star

The Blue Devils’ Ella Puls had a great freshman season last year. She was 12th in the 200 individual medley at last year’s conference meet.

The Lodi girls swim team has been on the rise over the past couple of seasons and their returning talent level has them thinking big in 2019.

“Our strength is in our number of girls, the most in school history,” Blue Devil coach Jerica Robinson said. “Our weakness is that we are a pretty young team with only 3 seniors.”

The Lady Blue Devils have a record 18 swimmers on this year’s roster.

Lodi is coming off a historic season. The Blue Devils were a school-record 3-4 in Badger North Conference duals last season.

“We had the most conference wins in school history last year and we are hoping to match that again this year,” Robinson said.

The Lady Blue Devils finished seventh at last year’s Badger North Conference Meet. They followed it up by placing 11th at the WIAA Baraboo Sectional.

The Blue Devils will be led this season by senior Brooke Presny, sophomore Ella Puls and senior Riley Petrick.

Last season, Presny placed 11th at the conference meet in the 200 freestyle. She was also a part of school record-breaking efforts in the 200 medley, 200 freestyle and 400 freestyle relays.

“Brooke is our top individual swimmer and the hardest worker around,” Robinson said.

Puls had a great freshman season. She set school records in the 100 breaststroke and 200 medley relay. At the conference meet, she was 12th in the 200 individual medley and 13th in the 100 breaststroke.

Petrick was also a part of the three record-breaking relays. She also placed 11th in the 100 backstroke at the Badger North Meet.

Junior Moriah Drabenstadt (13th in 100 freestyle and 100 breaststroke), senior Julia Wiessing (13th in 500 freestyle), sophomore Allison Lochner (22nd in 200 freestyle, 22nd in 100 freestyle), junior Gazmin Burke (20th in 200 IM, 24th in 100 freestyle), junior Mariah Clark (26th in 200 freestyle), sophomore Jessica Brisky (23rd in 50 freestyle, 20th in 100 breaststroke) and sophomore Emma Lochner (18th in 100 backstroke) also return to the Blue Devils after competing at last year’s conference meet.

Also looking to make an impact this season are Bella Avila (Fr.), Kiley Beuthin (So.), Sydney Grochek (Fr.), Anna Crary (So.), Anna Ladwig (Fr.), Whitnee Parson (Fr.), Grace Ryan (Fr.) and Kylie Statz (Jr.).

“This season will be a success if we get team work,” Robinson said. “We need the girls to be open to moving around during meets and not swimming those races for themselves, but for their team mates, and working hard for their team.”

The Badger North Conference race is wide open this season.

“Sauk, Deforest, Waunakee and Baraboo are all strong,” Robinson said. “We are in a very tough conference. Most of the schools are twice the size of us. We will go head-to-head with Beaver Dam, Portage and River Valley. Last year, we won all of the battles and are hoping to come out on top of those again.”

The Badger North meet is set for Nov. 1 in Baraboo.

The Lady Blue Devils will return to Baraboo the following week for a WIAA Division 2 sectional on Nov. 9.

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