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Swimming and Diving: Royals swim ahead of Park in SEC dual

Park's Tiana Cachuela swims the 100-yard butterfly during Thursday's dual at Cottage Grove Middle School. (Bulletin photo by Blaze Fugina)1 / 3
Woodbury’s Melissa Parker swims the 100-yard freestyle during Thursday's dual. (Bulletin photo by Blaze Fugina)2 / 3
Woodbury diver Meghan Miller prepares for impact during the 1-meter diving event. (Bulletin photo by Blaze Fugina)3 / 3

The Woodbury girls swimming and diving team defeated fellow South Washington County school Park in a Suburban East Conference dual at Cottage Grove Middle School on Thursday.

Royals swimmers won most of the events on their way to a team win of 118-66.

Woodbury standout Meghan Miller scored a first place finish in the 1-meter diving event with her mark of 263.05. The senior came away with some extra confidence about how those six dives went.

“I felt they went pretty good,” Miller said. “They were a lot better than what happened last week and last weekend.”

Miller had qualified for the Class 2A state meet in the past two years, including last fall when she finished third in the diving finals. The senior has received interest from Division 1 college programs the country, and she has narrowed her choice to either the University at Buffalo (New York) or the University of Kansas.

Miller said both programs stood out because of her connection with the coaches and their dedication to divers.

“I looked at both schools, obviously, academically as well as athletically,” Miller said. ”They both have what I want to do.”

Woodbury’s Melissa Parker was a first-place finisher in two individual events. Parker topped the 50-yard freestyle field with a swim of 25.42 seconds and was first in the 100 freestyle with a time of 55.96.

Woodbury’s other first place individuals included Sophia Vitela in the 200 individual medley (2:30.65), Mara Mueller in the 200 freestyle (2:14.68), Lindsay Lutton in the 500 freestyle (6:02.58) and Jessica Lu in the 100 breaststroke (1:15.56).

Woodbury also won two relays on Thursday. Those wins came from the 200 individual medley team of Parker, Lu, Sophia Vitela and Gabby Vitela (2:05.02); and the 200 freestyle relay of Abby Doyle, Bailey Misura, Elisa Roubinek and Hannah Wellens (2:08.58).

Cachuela takes first in two events

Park’s two individual first place finishes came from Tiana Cachuela on Thursday. She finished first in the 100 butterfly (1:01.65) and the 100 backstroke (1:05.15). Cachuela usually swims the 100 butterfly and said she has jumped between the individual medley and the backstroke events this season.

Cachuela switched club swimming teams over the offseason, and she is now with Riptide Swim Team in Apple Valley. She attributed that to her improvement this season.

“I switched teams last offseason, so coming back to my new team was a good refresh,” Cachuela said. “It gave me more confidence.”

The other first place finish for the Wolfpack came from the 400-yard freestyle relay. Cachuela, Alyssa Larson, Kate Reckinger and Emma Pomeroy combined to finish with a time of 4:07.71.