Hazen swimmer makes her mark at state meet
December 9, 2008
By Jim Feehan
Lauren Kaufman wasn’t fazed by the swimsuit worn by the Olympic games qualifier in the next lane. The sophomore swimmer at Hazen High School placed third in the 50-yard freestyle at the Class 3A state competition at the King County Aquatics Center last month. She also recorded a personal best time and broke the school record in the event.
Leona Jennings, a senior at Mount Rainier High School, won the event in a state-record time of 22.92. Lauren Poli, of Mercer Island High School, edged Kaufman by .03 of a second with a time of 24.29.
Jennings placed 12th in the 100-meter backstroke at the Olympic trials and decided to give prep swimming a try her senior year.
“She was wearing a $500 swimsuit that a Speedo representative said has been scientifically proven to enhance performance,” Hazen coach Diane Dobson said. “Lauren was more impressed with having her best time in the event than finishing third. She swam her heart out.”
Kaufman’s time was 24.32 in the finals. Last year, she was third at the state meet in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 24.53. Dobson said Kaufman shows great maturity for a sophomore and will only get better.
“I was extremely proud of her,” Dobson said.
Kaufman also finished fifth in the 100-yard freestyle, improving on her ninth-place finish last year. She also helped Hazen place 10th in the 200-yard relay and ninth in the 200-yard freestyle relay. Joining Kaufman on both relay teams was Kaysie Rozsonits, Kaitlin Nelson and Kaela Nurmi.
Rozsonits placed ninth in the 100-yard breaststroke and 10th in the 50-yard freestyle.
Liberty tied with Hanford High School for 11th in the team standings with 78 points.
“In my four years as swim coach at Hazen, we have consistently finished between seventh and 11th,” Dobson said.
Liberty High School finished 14th overall in team standings with 58 points. The Patriots were led by divers Katie Tsutakawa and Krista Lockhart, who finished seventh and eighth in the diving competition. Nicole Lecoq was ninth in the 100 backstroke and 200 individual medley. Elise Tinseth finished tenth in the 200 individual medley.
Lecoq and Tinseth had personal records in those events at the King County Aquatics Center in Federal Way.
The Patriots’ 400 free relay team of Tinseth, Nicole, Michela Lecoq and Mackenzie Maynes set a school record by more than 3 seconds.
“I was extremely proud of how our kids did at the state meet,” said Liberty coach Kris Daughters. “They supported each other and concentrated on personal bests, and that’s great.”