The Minnewaska Area-Morris Area Gators had just one meet last week, but it was a tough one as the Gators swam at Melrose Area last Tuesday night, losing to the strong Dutchmen swimming and diving program, 123-63.

The Gators did have four firsts during the competition as Melena Longtin won the 100 freestyle (57.48), Lyla Stadtherr earned first in the 200 individual medley (2:33.54), Clare Barnstuble won the diving competition (191.45 points) and the 200 freestyle relay team of Longtin, Stadtherr, Isabel Guerra and Soffia Stadtherr also placed first with a time of 1:50.67.

The Gators, coached by head coach Sam Oellien, Kathy Walker (diving coach), Shannon Dougherty, Summer Rydell and Ruth Hovel, are set to host Sauk Centre at the Minnewaska High School pool at 6 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 19 (tomorrow).  It’s the last chance to see the Gators at the MAHS pool this fall.

Minnewaska Area is also set to compete at Fergus Falls, Saturday for a competition added late to the schedule.  “We are hoping this will be a good opportunity to see some teams from our new section,” coach Sam Oellien said.  “Our junior high girls will be competing at Sauk Centre the same day and that’s always a fun meet for the younger Gators to really shine.”

Melrose 123, Gators 63

Melrose won eight-of-12 events on the way to a 123-63 victory over the Gators last Tuesday at Melrose.  The bad news is that the Gators were almost doubled in points by the strong Melrose team.  The good news is that the Gators have a different section this year and won’t have to face Melrose in the section competition.

The Gators did earns four firsts as the 200 freestyle relay team of Isabel Guerra, Soffia Stadtherr, Melena Longtin and Lyla Stadtherr placed first with a time of 1:50.67; Longtin also won the 100 freestyle (57.48); Lyla Stadtherr earned first in the 200 individual medley (2:33.54) and Clare Barnstuble continued her strong season diving with a first in diving (191.45 points).

Scoring for the competition  was 6 for first-4 for second-3-2-1 for the individual events and 8-4-2 for relays.

“We know Melrose is a tough team, but the Gators held their own and gave them some great competition in the pool and on the diving board,” coach Oellien said.  “

There were several very close finishes during the meet as Lyle Stadtherr won by .25 in the 200 medley, Longtin won by .67 in the 100 freestyle, Barnstuble earned first by four points in diving and the 200 relay team won by .15 in a photo finish.

There was also a tie as the Gators 400 yard freestyle relay team tied with Melrose for second place when both teams were given times of 4:07.69.

Also earning second for the Gators was Becca Femrite in the 200 free 2:14.91), Longtin in the 50 free (25.88) and Lyla Stadtherr in the 100 breaststroke  (1:16.34), while placing third were Mesa Kittelson in the 100 butterfly (1:11.86) and Ella Roering in diving (166.95).

“We mixed things up a bit and had a few athletes trying new things,” coach Oellien said.  “The divers are throwing in some new dives and Becca Femrite swam the 500 free and made sections.  We also had some JVers give the 500 a try.

“We are getting to a tough stretch of the season, but the Gators don’t seem to be slowing down.  It is nice to have such great athletes that trust us coaches and will go out and perform each time they are asked.”

•  Melrose Area also won the JV competition, 139-36.  The only Gators’ entry to place second was the 200 yard freestyle relay team of Berdine Kleindl, Abbigail Peterson, Grace Zenk and Shelby Hoberg (2:15.56).

at Melrose 123, Gators 63

Individual results (winner and top-5 Gators):

200 medley relay:  (1) Melrose 2:06.07  (4) Gators #1 (Soffia Stadtherr, Lyla Stadtherr, Mesa Kittelson, Isabel Guerra) 2:08.29  (5) Gators #2 (Jilian Schott, Gabby Schneider, Becca Femrite, Sarah Dougherty) 2:20.97

200 freestyle:  (1) Smith, Mel 2:08.76  (2) Femrite, Gators 2:14.91  (5) Sage Barnstuble, Gators 2:26.34

200 individual medley:  (1) Lyla Stadtherr, Gators 2:33.54  (5) Phemie Oeltjen, Gators 3:12.72

50 freestyle:  (1) Drossel, Mel 25.7  (2) Melena Longtin, Gators 25.88  (5) Guerra, Gators 29.75

Diving:  (1) Clare Barnstuble, Gators 191.45  (3) Ella Roering, Gators 166.95

100 butterfly:  (1) Anderson, Mel 1:06.24  (3) Kittelson, Gators 1:11.86  (4) Ella Larson, Gators 1:27.3  (5) Oeltjen, Gators 1:31.4

100 freestyle:  (1) Longtin, Gators 57.48  (5) Sage Barnstuble, Gators 1:06.1

500 freestyle:  (1) Smith, Mel 5:56.19  (4) Femrite, Gators 6:18.76  (5) Jilian Schott, Gators 7:10.37

200 freestyle relay:  (1) Gators #1 (Guerra, S. Stadtherr, L. Stadtherr, Longtin) 1:50.67  (5) Gators #2 (Kittelson, Oeltjen, Dougherty, S. Barnstuble) 2:07.84

100 backstroke:  (1) Ruoff, Mel 1:03.13  (4) S. Stadtherr, Gators 1:12.85  (5) Abbigail Peterson, Gators 1:27.63

100 breaststroke:  (1) Drossel, Mel 1:07.83  (2) L. Stadtherr, Gators 1:16.34  (5) Schneider, Gators 1:28.61

400 freestyle relay:  (1) Mel 4:01.44  (2) Gators #1 (S. Stadtherr, S. Barnstuble, Femrite, Longtin) 4:07.69  (5) Gators #2 (Lorin Wilts, Berdine Kleindl, Vylet Frank, Ella Larson) 5:10.56