Yes, Virginia. There is life after Torri Huske for the Yorktown Patriots.
The girls high-school swimming and diving team recently won its first postseason meet, and in dominating fashion, since Huske graduated in June. The Patriots amassed a single-meet team record 531 points in winning the Liberty District swimming and diving championship at Washington-Liberty High School. McLean was a distant second with 379.5.
In the meet, Yorktown swimmers won six races and finished second and third in three each. Some 14 Yorktown swimmers scored points for the team, in addition to four divers.
The talented and 2021 U.S. Summer Olympic-swimmer Huske routinely helped Yorktown score 120 points in single meets during her four-year high-school career. Huske played a big role in Yorktown 2021 state championship team.
Without her, Yorktown coach Torey Ortmayer said his swimmers realized they would have to pick up the slack, and the coach said they are responding. Plus, he says the team has more depth this season.
“We have a lot of talented swimmers and they have all stepped forward to do their part without Torri. They are motivated by wanting to continue to be a strong team,” Ortmayer said. “They swam great at districts. It was kind of an explosion with how well they did.”
The Yorktown girls won the medley (1:46.13) and 400 freestyle (3:31.38) relays and were second in the 200 free relay.
Individually, Yorktown senior Lauren Hartel led the way by winning two races, the 500 free (5:00:81) and the 200 free (1:53.42). Caroline Burgeson won the 100 backstroke (56.98) and was second in the 50 free, and Rachel Conley was first in the 100 butterfly (56.05) and took third in the 50 free.
Yorktown freshman Nora Sherman was second in the 200 individual medley and fourth in the back, Grace Jansen was third in the IM and fifth in the fly, Lauren Fatouros was third in the 500 free and fourth in the 200 free, freshman Clara McCarthy was fourth in the 500 free and fifth in the 200 free, Bridget Morris Larkin was second in the 100 breaststroke and sixth in the IM, Ashley Deabler took fourth in the fly and 12th in the back, Scarlett Gray placed fifth in the 100 free and seventh in the back, Clara Smith was sixth in the fly and ninth in the IM, Sarah Newman had two sevenths, and Jay Young and Alaina Desautels scored in races.
In girls diving, Ellie Simmons finished fourth to lead the way.
The Yorktown boys nearly won their meet, as well, finishing second with 401 points, five behind the McLean Highlanders.
“We really didn’t know how competitive the boys would be, then we almost won,” Ortmayer said.
Nolan Dunkel won two races (back, 49.23 and 50 free, 21.31) to lead Yorktown. Jack Carman won the breast (56.59) and was seventh in the IM, Noah Robinson (IM and fly) and Luke Aslaksen (10 and 100 free) each finished fourth in two races, Rayce Winn was second in diving, the medley relay won, and the 200 and 400 free relays were second.