Pirates see improvement, but fall to Detroit Lakes

Jacob Shames
Crookston Times
Victoria Proulx swam a career-best time in the 50-meter freestyle on Thursday.

Crookston girls' swimming fell to Detroit Lakes, 143-30, in a dual meet at the Crookston Community Pool on Thursday.

The Pirates, who lost their sixth dual in as many meets this season, were always going to have a hard time competing with the much deeper Lakers, especially with only nine swimmers. But coach Marley Melbye was happy with a number of performances on the night, especially considering a rigorous week of practice.

"We practiced hard this week and probably weren't expecting to have our best times for the night, but some of the girls really rose to that challenge," Melbye said. "The girls still were able to find it in themselves to swim and compete."

Crookston had four third-place finishes: two from Naomi Olson (200-meter freestyle, 400-meter freestyle) and two from Mackenzie Aamoth (100-meter butterfly, 100-meter backstroke). Aamoth's time in the backstroke, 1:25.64, was her fastest time this season.

In addition, the Pirates had substantial improvements from Claire Oman, who placed fourth in the 200-meter IM with a time over 10 seconds faster than the start of the season, and fourth in the 100-meter freestyle.

"She's been working hard on (the IM) in practice and really working on versatility and the different strokes," Melbye said. "She's one that's digging for that success, so it's exciting to see that come to light."

Victoria Proulx placed fourth in the 50-meter freestyle, swimming her fastest-ever time at 35.15, and placed fourth in the 100-meter butterfly as well.

"Victoria, this year, has taken a whole new leadership role on this team," Melbye said. "She's always been one of our Steady Eddies, but now we're asking a lot more out of her and she's delivering."

Melbye was also impressed with the performance of Crookston's newcomers, including Chloe Boll and Lucy Smith, who shaved considerable amounts of time in their races. Boll placed fourth in the 400-meter freestyle, and Smith did the same in the 100-meter breaststroke.

Grace Meiner, a returner from last season, placed fourth in the 200-meter freestyle as well.

Crookston's relay team of Aamoth, Olson, Oman and Proulx finished third in the 200-meter medley relay and 200-meter freestyle relay. 

"I've always said that these girls have heart and dedication and they truly have passion for this sport, and I think that's what showed today," Melbye said. "I don't think you'll find people that are more passionate about swimming than Claire and Kenzie and Madison Hoiland (who didn't swim Thursday), and so it's fun to see those successes be passed on to other people on the team. They're sharing their passion, and that's what I'm excited to see so far."

UP NEXT: The Pirates will be on the road on Tuesday Sept. 29 to take on The North (Warroad/Roseau/Badger/Greenbush-Middle River) in Warroad. 

"We gotta look at our individual successes," Melbye said. "We're not gonna be number one, but we can continue to improve, continue to do new things and that's what I want the girls to see."


  • 200-meter medley relay: Mackenzie Aamoth, Claire Oman, Naomi Olson and Victoria Proulx third (2:47.57), Elizabeth Helgeson, Lucy Smith, Chloe Boll and Grace Meiner fifth (3:33.42)
  • 200-meter freestyle relay: Victoria Proulx, Naomi Olson, Mackenzie Aamoth and Claire Oman third (2:25.05), Elizabeth Helgeson, Grace Meiner, Lucy Smith and Chloe Boll fifth (2:57.86)
  • Chloe Boll: fourth in 400-meter freestyle (7:09.35), fifth in 100-meter freestyle (1:33.59)
  • Claire Oman: fourth in 200-meter IM (3:13.09), fourth in 100-meter freestyle (1:16.62)
  • Elizabeth Helgeson: fifth in 100-meter backstroke (2:00.18), sixth in 50-meter freestyle (51.50)
  • Grace Meiner: fourth in 200-meter freestyle (4:52.06), fifth in 100-meter breaststroke (2:42.14)
  • Lucy Smith: fourth in 100-meter breaststroke (2:17.29), fifth in 50-meter freestyle (50.86)
  • Mackenzie Aamoth: third in 100-meter butterfly (1:37.67), third in 100-meter backstroke (1:25.64)
  • Mya Bower: third in JV 50-meter freestyle (1:08.10), third in JV 100-meter backstroke (2:58.93)
  • Naomi Olson: third in 200-meter freestyle (3:32.93), third in 400-meter freestyle (6:47.98)
  • Victoria Proulx: fourth in 50-meter freestyle (35.15), fourth in 100-meter butterfly (1:51.28)

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