April 1, 2013

MORNING SENTINEL GIRLS SWIMMER OF THE YEAR: Messalonskee sophomore off to fast start

By Matt DiFilippo mdifilippo@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

Kristy Prelgovisk is the first to admit that her mindset is unusual. Her results are unusual too, so no one's complaining.

click image to enlarge

Kristy Prelgovisk has been named Morning Sentinel Girls Swimmer of the Year.

Staff photo by David Leaming

Morning Sentinel / Kennebec Journal Girls Swimming All-Stars

First team

200 medley relay: Messalonskee (Amber Sutherland, Kristy Prelgovisk, Ally Fischang, Katie Swenson)

200 free: Ally Fischang, Messalonskee

200 IM: Erzsie Nagy, Lawrence

50 free: Melissa Petersen, Cony

100 fly: Kristy Prelgovisk, Messalonskee

100 free: Vika Arkhipova, Winslow

500 free: Kayley McNeff, Cony

200 free relay: Cony (Melissa Petersen, Kayley McNeff, Jenna Harwood, Grace Pouliot)

100 back: Vika Arkhipova, Winslow

100 breast: Kristy Prelgovisk, Messalonskee

400 free relay: Messalonskee (Amber Sutherland, Kailieigh Lenentine, Ally Fischang, Kristy Prelgovisk)

Second Team

200 medley relay: Winslow (Jessica Greeley, Sierra Hopkins, Vika Arkhipova, Bethany Winkin) (2:01.62)

200 free: Kayley McNeff, Cony

200 IM: Jessica Greeley, Winslow

50 free: Erzsie Nagy, Lawrence

100 fly: Sierra Hopkins, Winslow

100 free: Melissa Petersen, Cony

500 free: Ally Fischang, Messalonskee

200 free relay: Erskine (Kat Newcombe, Katherine Wight, Gillian Welch, Emma Wilkinson)

100 back: Taylor Paulison, Richmond

100 breast: Sierra Hopkins, Winslow

400 free relay: Winslow (Bethany Winkin, Jessica Greeley, Sierra Hopkins, Vika Arkhipova)

Prelgovisk, a sophomore on the Messalonskee swim team, holds two school records and contended for state titles in two events. Yet, before she races, she doesn't focus on a time or a record.

"I always just want to do my best and see what I do," Prelgovisk said. "Winning is nice, but I don't mind if someone beats me. I'm happy for them if they do."

However much she downplays winning, Prelgovisk still did a lot of it. This winter, she won the 100 butterfly and the 100 breaststroke at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class A championships and finished in the top three at the state meet in both events. She also was part of Messalonskee's successful 200 medley and 400 freestyle relay teams.

Those accomplishments make Prelgovisk the choice for the Morning Sentinel Girls Swimmer of the Year. Winslow's Vika Arkhipova was also considered.

Lindsey Prelgovisk, Kristy's older sister, was Morning Sentinel Girls Swimmer of the Year in three of the last four years and now swims at Bates. Lindsey held every record at Messalonskee except the 100 breaststroke (which Kristy set as a freshman), and Kristy broke Lindsey's record in the 100 fly this season.

"She and her sister have a very healthy relationship," Messalonskee coach Sara Rushton said. "Lindsey expects some of her records to be broken. I expect (Kristy) to break a few more records in the next two years."

Prelgovisk also swims with USA swimming, so she typically practices 2 1/2 hours per day, five days per week during the season. She does draw the line sometimes, however. A few weeks after setting a school record in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1 minute, 5.00 seconds, Prelgovisk swam 1:04 in a USA meet. Still, she'll skip nationals later this week, because it would take her away from preseason softball. She's actually already qualified in multiple events for next year's nationals.

Rushton says she likes to have her swimmers qualify in as many events as possible during the season, so she'll have more options when the Eagles reach the conference championship and state championship meets. Prelgovisk is perfect for that because she's so versatile. After finishing second in the state in the 50 freestyle as a freshman, she did not compete in that event at states as a sophomore.

Instead, Prelgovisk placed third in the 100 butterfly at states and second in the 100 breaststroke. In the latter event, she was nosed out by Deering senior Genevieve Worthley for the second straight year.

"She went up against a phenomenal swimmer in the breaststroke," Rushton said. "Being young, she did awesome."

Rushton dropped some hints this season that she wants to see Prelgovisk swim the 200 IM for Messalonskee at the state championship meet next winter. She believes Prelgovisk could be a state championship contender in that event.

"I actually love the 200 IM," Prelgovisk said. "I love all four strokes a lot."

"I would like to see her at the state meet do the 200 IM for us," Rushton said. "But she can swim pretty much anything she sets her mind to."

Matt DiFilippo -- 861-9243


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