Woodbury boys swimming & diving: Lugg, Norsten lead way at sectionsWoodbury seniors Greg Norsten and Victor Lugg each qualified for state in four events – two individual events and two relays – at the section meet, held Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24 and 25, at Stillwater Junior High School.
By: Patrick Johnson, Sports Editor, Woodbury Bulletin
Woodbury’s swimming stars shined brightest at the Section 4AA championships.
Woodbury seniors Greg Norsten and Victor Lugg each qualified for state in four events – two individual events and two relays – at the section meet, held Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24 and 25, at Stillwater Junior High School.
Norsten won the 200-yard individual medley, the event he is the defending state champion in, and the 500-yard freestyle and teamed up with Lugg to help the Royals’ 200-yard freestyle relay earn second place and the Royals’ 200-yard medley relay take second place. Junior David Khazanovich and sophomore Eric Westphal also were part of the 200-yard medley relay and Khazanovich and junior Nate Henning were members of the 200-yard free relay.
Individually, Lugg also won the 50-yard freestyle and the 100-yard freestyle.
“It was our goal to make it in the relays this year and we pulled it out. In the individual events I was only worried about disqualifying – the relays is where all my effort went today,” Norsten said.
Norsten began the meet helping the 200-yard medley relay reach state with a time of 1 minute, 40.25 seconds – just back of East Ridge’s time of 1:39.0, then set a Section 4AA meet record in the 200-yard IM with a time of 1 minute, 55.39 seconds, touching the wall over two seconds ahead of East Ridge senior standout Austin Davidson. In back-to-back events, Norsten won the 500 free with a time of 4:49.33, then swam the anchor leg on the Royals’ state-qualifying 200 free relay, which sprinted to a time of 1:29.60 – just back of Stillwater’s 1:28.73 section championship time.
“After my 500 I swam a 20, so that was really exciting,” Norsten said. “It was like a two-minute break. It was fun.”
Norsten earned Swimmer of the Meet honors for his performance.
“In the relays I definitely swam well. I need a little break. I’ve been training really hard up to this meet. Hopefully next week I can get even faster,” he said.
Lugg won both of his sprints fairly easily, although competing against Stillwater record-holder Vince Radecke, a senior. Lugg won the 50 free in a time of 21.62 edging Radecke’s 21.85 and won the 100 free with a time of 47.59, compared to Radecke’s 48.11.
At last year’s state meet, Norsten won the Class AA state championship in the 200 IM with a time of 1:51.87, breaking the Woodbury High School record and becoming the Royals’ first state swim champion since 1999, and also earned a second-place finish in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 50.23. Lugg earned a bronze medal at state with a third-place finish in the 50-freestyle and had a fourth-place finish in the 100-yard freestyle. Lugg had a time of 21.35 in the 50 free and a 46.92 in the 100. Edina senior Tim Satterthwaite won the 50 free in 21.02 and Edina senior Mike Gratz won the 100 in a 45.13 time.
Norsten will look to defend his state title and perhaps add more gold, while Lugg hopes to top the podium for the first time at the 2011-12 boys Class AA state meet, held March 1 through 3 at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center.
However, neither swimmer is making any predictions publicly.
“I just want to hope for the best and see what happens,” Norsten said.