Fierke in Top-10 for FDSH
MARSHALLTOWN — Fort Dodge’s Eileen Fierke capped a brilliant freshman season in the pool with a Top-10 finish at the girls state swim meet here on Saturday.
Fierke took 10th in the 200 freestyle in 1:56.75. Her time of 1:55.53 in the prelims was a personal best.
“Eileen gave us a glimpse of what’s to come,” FDSH head coach Ashley Beaumont said. “You don’t see freshmen placing in the Top-10 down here individually very often. This sets her up nicely for the future, and is a great way to cap a terrific year for her.
“We’re all very proud of her performance.”
The Dodgers also took 13th in the 400 freestyle relay, behind the efforts of Fierke; her sister, senior Elora Fierke; junior Grace Hartley and senior Madigan Peimann. The quartet clocked a 3:40.94.
“They dropped even more time and came really close to the school record,” Beaumont said. “It’s been a special season for them, too, and that’s as high of a relay (placing) as we’ve had down here in a while.”
Hartley took 13th in the 200 individual medley in 2:12.42. She turned in a school-best time of 2:11.35 in the prelims.
Hartley was also 16th in the 500 freestyle (5:21.00).
“We continue to learn a lot about balancing between the prelims and the finals,” Beaumont said. “On one hand, you have to go very hard just to advance. But you also have to leave something in the tank for the finals. It’s a fine line and you just learn from experience.
“Grace set a school record in the 200 IM, so even though she was probably a little disappointed in what happened overall, it was still an outstanding showing and another great year for her.”
Eileen Fierke was 21st in the 500 (5:17.71). The 200 free relay of Eileen Fierke, Rylie Steinkamp, Peimann and Hartley was 23rd in 1:42.51.
Peimann took 26th in the 100 backstroke (1:00.85) and 27th in the 100 freestyle (55.45). Elora Fierke was 27th in the 200 IM (2:16.61).
“We’re going to really miss the influence and leadership of both Madigan and Elora,” Beaumont said of her two seniors. “They’ve meant so much to our program and to me, personally, as a coach. It’s amazing how quickly things go, from seeing them as 11-year-olds when I first got here to who they are today.
“They’re terrific competitors, but even better young women. We asked a lot of them, and they always put the team first.”
Fort Dodge placed 20th with 20 points. The Dodgers were ahead of CIML Iowa Conference team members West Des Moines Valley, Marshalltown, Mason City and Southeast Polk in the final standings, closing ahead of everyone but Waukee (5th).
West Des Moines Dowling unseated eight-time defending champion Ames as state queen in the team race.