Lady Panthers upset Lander in home dual

Liggett, Karhu, Harder win individual events

Posted 10/15/19

The Powell High School girls’ swimming and diving team bested the defending state 3A champions at the Powell Aquatic Center on Friday, outscoring Lander 168-147 for the dual meet win.

Anna …

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Lady Panthers upset Lander in home dual

Liggett, Karhu, Harder win individual events


The Powell High School girls’ swimming and diving team bested the defending state 3A champions at the Powell Aquatic Center on Friday, outscoring Lander 168-147 for the dual meet win.

Anna Fuller (200 IM), Elizabeth Liggett (500 free), Lucia Harder (100 butterfly) and Emma Karhu (diving) all won their respective events.

“Our team depth proved decisive in the meet, but Lander was missing two of their top swimmers,” said PHS head coach Bob Smartt, referring to Lander sophomore Aslon Koch and freshman Lainey Duncan.

As for the Lady Panthers, Smartt said the two biggest highlights were Karhu’s diving performance and the swimming by the team’s newest state qualifier, Grace Sapp.

Karhu had a stellar meet on the diving board, scoring a personal-best 225.20. That was a 15-point improvement on her prior personal record of 210.05, set earlier this season, and was the second-best score ever posted by a Lady Panther.

“Emma won the dive competition by more than 70 points,” Smartt said. “That now ranks her second position on the Powell Wall of Fame.”

Teammate Kami Jensen took second in diving with 153.45.

Meanwhile, Sapp improved her personal best in the 100 backstroke by over six seconds, swimming the event in 1:12.18 and becoming the team’s 17th state qualifier, Smartt said.

On the day, the Panthers recorded 22 state-qualifying performances, including double state standards by Grace Harder, Addison Moretti, Sidney O’Brien, Madison Lowery and Rachel Kuntz.

“Lander has always been our top competitor and we’ve fallen short at all the meets against them,” Kuntz said. “We were all pretty disappointed from last year’s turnout at conference and state, so we knew we had to step up our game for next season. ... This year was the first year we had a dual against Lander, so knowing that we can beat Lander at big meets as well as duals feels really good. As a senior and it being my final year, it’s really nice to not be in Lander’s shadow.”

The Powell athletes posted a total of 24 personal bests. Athletes who posted personal records in both of their individual events included Lucia Harder, Katie Beavers, Anita Martinez, Gabby Paterson and Lauren Lejeune.

The dual meet was scored using four athletes from each team in individual events.

“This scoring method favors our team because of our depth,” Smartt said. “Lander Valley is fortunate to have an extremely strong club program that will continue to produce many top level swimmers such as Olivia Fowler and Aslon Koch. Our best hope to counter this strong club program is to increase the number of athletes in our club and high school programs, and to train them with gusto using sports science.”


Lady Panthers 90,

Worland 83

The PHS girls’ swimming and diving team was in Worland Thursday; Powell went to exhibition swimming after the meet’s eighth event to balance the scoring.

The Lady Panthers won 11 of 12 events, led by double event winners Anna Fuller (50 and 500 freestyle), Elizabeth Liggett (200 IM and 100 butterfly) and Harder (100 free and 100 breaststroke).

Single event winners were Lowery in her first attempt at the 200 freestyle and Karhu in diving.

“We rested several of our top athletes from the meet so they would be more energized for the next days’ key meet against Lander,” Smartt said. “We had 13 personal best performances at the meet.”

Fuller, Harder and Beavers (50 and 100 freestyle) all recorded personal bests in both of their individual events, he said.

The Lady Panthers are back in action today (Tuesday), hosting a dual against Worland beginning at 5 p.m. at the PAC. The team will then host Riverton at 4 p.m. Friday.

With the conference meet scheduled to begin Oct. 25 in Riverton, the Lady Panthers are hoping for a solid showing, the momentum of which they can carry into the state meet the following week.

Kuntz said she and her fellow seniors are looking forward to a final shot at a state title.

“I like where we’re at as a team, but I’d sure love it if we could really step up to the plate and show all 3A teams that we mean business,” she said. “In the past, we’ve shown to be successful up until conference and state because we end up breaking under pressure. ... I think we need to really stick together and think about the end goal instead of getting into our heads.”


Lady Panthers 168, Lander 147


200 Medley Relay

1. Sidney O’Brien, Anna Fuller, Lucia Harder, Madison Lowery 2:02.84, 3. Emma Mitchell, Rachel Kuntz, Ashlyn Aguirre, Gabby Paterson 2:11.65

200 Freestyle

2. Elizabeth Liggett 2:12.79, 4. Sydney Legler 2:19.94, 5. Grace Harder 2:20.61, 6. Dakota Hansen 2:29.57, 9. Colette Sanders 2:44.11, 11. Katie Beavers 3:08.22

200 IM

1. Anna Fuller 2:25.01, 2. Lucia Harder 2:31.70, 3. Addison Moretti 2:32.54, 5. Sidney O’Brien 2:39.63 3A

50 Freestyle

2. Madison Lowery 27.36, 4. Emma Mitchell 28.42, 6. Emma Karhu 28.96, 7. Lily Halter 29.50, 9. Natalie McIntosh 32.67, 10. KayCee Twitchell 34.34, 13. Juanita Martinez 40.13, 15. Hannah Hawley 42.22

1 Mtr Diving

1. Emma Karhu 225.20, 2. Kami Jensen 153.45, 6. Maddi Hackenberg 115.60, 8. Taycee Walker 105.25, 9. Kaylee DeGlau 99.95

100 Butterfly

1. Lucia Harder 1:06.25, 2. Rachel Kuntz 1:09.37, 3. Ashlyn Aguirre 1:10.50, 7. Sydney Legler 1:18.47, 10. Sarah Miller 1:53.03

100 Freestyle

3. Gabby Paterson 1:02.54, 5. Madison Lowery 1:03.69, 7. Lily Halter 1:08.83, 8. Lauren Lejeune 1:08.99, 9. Azurdey Burton 1:09.98, 12. Natalie McIntosh 1:16.44

500 Freestyle

1. Elizabeth Liggett 5:54.75, 3. Addison Moretti 6:04.51, 4. Grace Harder 6:17.99, 7. Dakota Hansen 6:38.58

200 Freestyle Relay

2. Anna Fuller, Madison Lowery, Elizabeth Liggett, Addison Moretti 1:51.46, 5. Gabby Paterson, Sydney Legler, Emma Karhu, Grace Harder 2:08.34

100 Backstroke

2. Sidney O’Brien 1:09.26, 4. Grace Sapp 1:12.18, 6. Ashlyn Aguirre 1:13.42, 7. Emma Mitchell 1:15.15, 8. Kylie Kahl 1:15.25, 9. Azurdey Burton 1:22.42, 10. Katie Beavers 1:31.56, 12. Juanita Martinez 1:40.96, 13. Sarah Miller 1:48.32, 14. Hannah Hawley 1:54.04

100 Breaststroke

1. Anna Fuller 1:18.19, 2. Rachel Kuntz 1:21.98, 4. Gabby Paterson 1:24.09, 7. Lauren Lejeune 1:31.61, 10. Colette Sanders 1:35.56

400 Freestyle Relay

2. Elizabeth Liggett, Lucia Harder, Addison Moretti, Sidney O’Brien 4:08.14, 4. Sydney Legler, Grace Harder, Ashlyn Aguirre, Emma Mitchell 4:36.54, 5. Azurdey Burton, Grace Sapp, Natalie McIntosh, Katie Beavers 5:04.11