The West Fargo Sheyenne Mustangs improved on last year’s fourth-place finish, earning the runner-up spot with 329 points Saturday, Nov. 16, at the North Dakota girls state swimming and diving meet at Bismarck Aquatic and Wellness Center.

The Mustangs, who won their second consecutive Eastern Dakota Conference championship a week earlier, grabbed their best state finish in school history.

West Fargo High School Packers finished a spot higher than last year’s fifth-place finish, taking fourth at the state meet with 177 points. Bismarck Century captured a fifth-straight state title, scoring 355.5 team points for the championship.

The Packers also took home titles in individual events at the 16-team tournament.

Leading the charge for the Packers was Liv Hettinger, who won the 100 backstroke with a time of 56.93. Hettinger was also a part of the first-place 200 medley relay team with Hannah Potter, Tatum Brooks and Alexis Doeling, who won the event with a time of 1:48.51. The squad's top-spot time broke a school record previously set in 2014 by Mykin Gunning, Andie Peterson, Emily Bourassa and Hallie Peterson.

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Brooks, a junior, and sophomore Hettinger were named to the all-state team.

Sheyenne’s 200 medley relay team of Breanna Lund, Lauren McDonagh, Tierney Howell and Madi Yonke followed with a second-place finish (1:49.13) in the event.

Greta Bellas swims to second place in the 200 free. Bellas, who received all-state honors, also placed second in the 400-yard freestyle relay, and had two other top-five finishes.  Submitted photo
Greta Bellas swims to second place in the 200 free. Bellas, who received all-state honors, also placed second in the 400-yard freestyle relay, and had two other top-five finishes. Submitted photo

Yonke, a senior who has been on the Mustangs squad since its inception, also tallied a runner-up finish in the 100 free with a swim of 52.86.

Hettinger placed second in the 50 free with a time of 23.85. Howell took fourth with a swim of 24.10 in the 50 freestyle, and Yonke place fifth (24.48).

Junior Laiken Sturn earned West Fargo a fourth-place finish in the 1-meter dive with a score of 388.95.

Sheyenne had three top-five finishers in the 100 butterfly. Howell took second with a time of 58.50, Brooks followed with a third-place finish in 58.94, and Breanna Triplett placed fourth (59.72).

Greta Bellas earned a second-place finish for the Mustangs in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:53.50. Bellas also placed third in the 500 free with a 5:17.22 swim.

Bellas, a sophomore, received all-state team honors, along with teammate Howell, who is only a ninth-grader.

The Packer relay team of Hettinger, Doeling, Potter and Brooks got on the board again in the 200 freestyle relay, swimming to third place with a time of 1:39.72. Sheyenne’s Bellas, Triplett, McDonagh and Madee Shea took fifth in the event with a 1:42.87 swim.

The Mustangs team of Bellas, Shea, Howell and Yonke also tallied a second-place finish (3:36.24) in the 400-yard freestyle relay.

Lund, Yonke and Triplett, a freshman, received second-team all-state honors.

Fargo Davies took third at state with 292.5 points, and Minot had 22 less points than West Fargo for a fifth-place finish (155).