Kenai’s Samuel Anderson swims in the 50-yard breaststroke at the SoHi Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Kenai’s Samuel Anderson swims in the 50-yard breaststroke at the SoHi Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer’s Nelson, Cordova’s Fritsch capture Pentathlon

Every swim team in the region — plus a few extras — came together in Soldotna on Friday for the annual SoHi Pentathlon.

Most high school swimming meets in Alaska follow the same structure of 24 events. Swimmers are registered for different events, and their team earns points for top six placements.

The Pentathlon, instead, challenges each individual swimmer to swim all five events, as individuals instead of as teams. These are the 100-yard individual medley and 50 yards each of butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle. The boy and girl with the fastest combined times claim the title.

Homer’s Carly Nelson and Cordova’s Trent Fritsch were this year’s Pentathlon winners.

Because it’s an unusual meet, and most of the events aren’t the ones swimmers will be competing in, in the upcoming championship meets, it’s a more low stakes, exhibition style competition.

In the last couple of years, a diving exhibition has been included as part of the day’s events.

Homer coach Caleb Miller said, “It’s just a nice opportunity for the kids to be able to showcase all four strokes.”

“It’s a nice breath of fresh air,” he said. “It does offer a little bit of a break from the normal routine.”

Kenai coach Will Hubler said he’s been coming out to the Pentathlon since 1984.

“My sprinters love it,” he said. “They get a time to shine.”

Swimming 50 yards in anything but freestyle is something they haven’t gotten to do since they were club swimming at 12 years old, he said. In high school, those events usually start at 100 yards.

Hubler said the structure of the Pentathlon, where every swimmer participates in every event, is a good challenge.

“They all have one event that they’re not great at. So it’s always the one they’ve gotta challenge themselves with,” he said.

Seward coach Solomon D’ Amico said he was proud of the way his team of eight showed up for the Pentathlon.

“They really seem to be acing the stuff outside of the water, which I really think helps set them up for acing this stuff in the water,” he said. “It’s a special season for our little team.”

Seward freshman Iver Gates — who placed 17th for the boys — said he was surprised that he didn’t get tired.

For Gates, the Pentathlon was a good low-stakes meet. He said the 50 butterfly was his favorite leg of the competition.

“I was mainly focusing on recovery right after the events,” he said.

SoHi coach Luke Herman said the pentathlon “breaks the monotony.”

“All the teams are coming off the hardest couple weeks of training,” he said. “It’s good to get the whole region together — and a couple of other schools — and be able to have some fun and go head to head.”

Herman, who has been coaching at SoHi for a few years, said the Pentathlon always reminds him to stop and have fun during the toughest weeks of the season.

“Stop and have fun, while still getting something out of it,” he said.

SoHi Junior Nikita Monyahan — who was the 6th place finisher for the pentathlon — said he was really satisfied with a good performance.

“Where I’m at in my season, due to the intensity that we’ve been training at; today, hitting personal records,” he said. “I’m really happy with how I did.”

Monyahan said the pentathlon is “tough on our bodies, but it’s not tough on our minds.”

He said it was nice to both get away from his usual events for a day, and to get a unique look at how everyone stands in competition with one another.

Following Friday’s Pentathlon, the teams returned to SoHi on Saturday for a more traditional meet — the SoHi Invitational.

Colony won the SoHi Invite for the girls, and Seward managed to pull the win for the boys, even with only six swimmers in competition.

Friday, Miller said Nelson delivered for the Homer girls — she won the whole thing — and said that Hunter Fry was strong for the boys. Fry placed 14th.

For Kenai, Sam Anderson was a key performer for the boys, Hubler said. Anderson finished second by around 2 seconds. Sierra Hershberger was showing up for the girls, placing seventh.

“I didn’t let off the workouts at all. I’m tapering for regions,” Hubler said. “But all the kids swam pretty well.”

D’ Amico said that senior Jackson Bird — who took 3rd — stood out for his perseverance. Hallee Schoening dropped two seconds from her 50 freestyle time — a significant difference.

Shoening’s performance was “really special,” D’ Amico said. Seeing the kids growing and benefiting from the work they’re putting in is “a huge part, for me, about what it’s all about.”

Herman said Max Reese and Monyahan were contending with some strong swims. The two were racing side by side all night. Reese placed ninth, with a time only 3 seconds slower than Monyahan. On the girls side, Heidi Snyder was a strong performer, placing 15th. Herman said Benn Abel locked in a couple of personal best times.

Looking forward to the end of the season, with the Palmer Invitational next week and the Region 3 Championships two weeks later, the coaches said their teams are in good shape.

Miller said the Homer Mariners were looking good as they prepared for the end of the season. A couple of injuries that Miller said his swimmers experienced in other sports hit the team hard, but they’re taking it in stride.

Hubler said the Kenai swimmers had been dealing with sickness in the last two weeks. He’s glad they got it out of the way.

He said as a team, they might not be able to claim one of the top spots at the upcoming championship meets, “but we’re gonna have some individuals that are gonna be super strong that I’m hoping will shine through.”

As the end of the season draws closer, D’ Amico said, “Honestly, we’re feeling really good. Not cocky, not arrogant. Just confident.”

For SoHi, “We’re tracking real closely how we’ve been performing compared to the rest of the region,” Herman said. “We’re in the best position we’ve been in several years, sort of since COVID derailed a lot of people’s training. I think we’re gonna have a really strong finish.”

Monyahan said, “It’s going to be tough to stick it all the way through, but that’s how it always is.”

“With a little bit of help from my teammates and trust in my coaches, I’m looking forward to probably the best season that I’ve had,” he said.


SoHi Pentathlon Results

Girls: 1. Carly Nelson, Homer 2 minutes, 58.26 seconds; 2. Jasmine Anderson, Colony 2:59.54; 3. Merica Miller, Colony 3:02.03; 4. Amaya Rocheleau, Kodiak 3:02.38; 5. Charisma Watkins, Soldotna 3:10.26; 6. Kylie Benner, Colony 3:14.07; 7. Sierra Hershberger, Kenai 3:16.63; 8. Addie Charton, Palmer 3:17.99; 9. Hannah Cooper, Colony 3:18.71; 10. Annabelle Franciscone, Homer 3:19.17; 11. Lori Houghton, Colony 3:19.40; 12. Nina Adams, Palmer 3:19.79; 13. Tirzah Frederickson, Soldotna 3:20.32; 14. Emily Neo, Kodiak 3:21.64; 15. Heidi Snyder, Soldotna 3:22.90; 16. Lia Jones, Kodiak 3:26.26

Boys: 1. Trent Fritsch, Cordova 2:44.94; 2. Samuel Anderson, Kenai Central 2:47.07; 3. Jackson Bird, Seward 2:48.05; 4. Nickolas Ambrosiani, Seward 2:49.42; 5. Paxton Hill, Seward 2:50.46; 6. Nikita Monyahan, Soldotna 2:50.60; 6. Kristofer Vangorder, Colony 2:50.60; 8. Bengimin Ambrosiani, Seward 2:51.41; 9. Max Reese, Soldotna 2:53.51; 10. James Berestoff, Kodiak 2:54.28; 11. Jackson Charton, Palmer 2:55.07; 12. Hayden Woodring, Colony 2:55.15; 13. Aidan Houser, Palmer 2:56.86; 14. Hunter Fry, Homer 2:58.49; 15. Ethan Berga, Kenai Central 2:59.57; 16. Kellan DenBleyker, Colony 2:59.60

Pentathlon Diving Exhibition Results

Girls: 1. Ally Hrncir, Palmer 241.05; 2. Audrey Dietz, Wasilla 228.65; 3. Abriella Werner, Soldotna 211.75; 4. Asha Gerteisen, Colony 195.05; 5. Charlize McManus, Colony 192.20; 6. Kichelle Frizzelle, Wasilla 170.40; 7. Samantha Grisham, Colony 150.90; 8. Samantha Geoghehan, Wasilla 139.50; 9. Molly Althens, Palmer 137.65; 10. Sofia Wood, Kodiak 112.15

Boys: 1. Deshawn Campbell, Wasilla 253.30; 2. Craig Elledge, Palmer 207.30; 3. Derrick Jones, Soldotna 187.50; 4. Noah Coulter, Kodiak 181.30; 5. Calvin Musgrave, Wasilla 179.70; 6. Rowan Wyszkowski, Kodiak 156.50; 7. Tim Karmer, Soldotna 115.35; 8. Ben Inman, Soldotna 94.60


SoHi Invitational Results:


Team Scores: 1. Colony, 109; 2. Kodiak, 72; 3. Soldotna, 58; 4. Kenai, 33; 5. Palmer, 29; 6. Homer, 23; 7. Wasilla, 4; 8. Seward, 2

200 Yard Medley Relay – 1. Colony A (Cooper, Anderson, Benner, Miller), 1:55.93; 2. Kodiak (Hagen, Jones, Neo, Narog), 2:03.57; 3. Soldotna (Snyder, Frederickson, Watkins, Burns), 2:05.61; 4. Palmer (Stocker, Adams, Charton, Kamongataa), 2:09.60; 5. Kenai Central (Anderson, McDonald, Alioto, Hershberger), 2:10.61; 6. Colony B (Edgar, Noffke, Ligman, Settle), 2:15.73

200 Yard Freestyle – 1. Merica Miller, Colony 2:00.95; 2. Hannah Cooper, Colony 2:10.00; 3. Zoe Burns, Soldotna 2:16.83; 4. Maria Anderson, Kenai Central 2:18.48; 5. Luthien Colver, Soldotna 2:27.32; 6. Sam Coulter, Kodiak 2:30.92

200 Yard Individual Medley – 1. Jasmine Anderson, Colony 2:15.11; 2. Lori Houghton, Colony 2:25.63; 3. Charisma Watkins, Soldotna 2:26.65; 4. Kylie Benner, Colony 2:28.33; 5. Amaya Rocheleau, Kodiak 2:28.95; 6. Tirzah Frederickson, Soldotna 2:29.00

50 Yard Freestyle – 1. Morgan Hagen, Kodiak 26.26; 2. Nina Adams, Palmer 27.34; 3. Alison Narog, Kodiak 27.50; 4. Annabelle Franciscone, Homer 28.05; 5. Abigail Price, Kenai Central 28.42; 6. Amaretta Settle, Colony 28.50

1 Meter Diving – 1. Abriela Werner, Soldotna 234.55; 2. Aly Hrncir, Palmer 232.05; 3. Asha Gerteisen, Colony 230.35; 4. Audrey Dietz, Wasilla 227.05; 5. Charlize McManus, Colony 187.55; 6. Kichelle Frizzelle, Wasilla 174.80

100 Yard Butterfly – Carly Nelson, Homer 58.93; 2. Emily Neo, Kodiak 1:07.52; 3. Madison McDonald, Kenai Central 1:09.71; 4. Tirzah Frederickson, Soldotna 1:10.89; 5. Abigail Price, Kenai Central 1:12.27; 6. Esme Wilder, Seward 1:14.98

100 Yard Freestyle – 1. Merica Miller, Colony 54.84; 2. Kylie Benner, Colony 58.96; 3. Heidi Snyder, Soldotna 59.92; 4. Lia Jones, Kodiak 1:03.42; 5. Kendyl Ligman, Colony 1:03.48; 6. Michelle Duffield, Kenai Central 1:09.37

500 Yard Freestyle – 1. Carly Nelson, Homer 5:28.29; 2. Hannah Cooper, Colony 5:33.74; 3. Heidi Snyder, Soldotna 5:51.38; 4. Lori Houghton, Colony 5:51.49; 5. Madison McDonald, Kenai Central 6:09.35; 6. Sofia Wood, Kodiak 6:12.29

200 Yard Freestyle Relay – 1. Kodiak (Rocheleau, Neo, Narog, Hagen), 1:46.41; 2. Soldotna (Snyder, Frederickson, Burns, Watkins), 1:52.26; 3. Palmer (Adams, Stocker, Kanongataa, Charton); 4. Colony (Houghton, Blackburn, Settle, Anderson), 1:54.66; 5. Kenai Central (Price, Duffield, Alioto, Siegersma), 1:58.93; 6. Homer (Nelson, Franciscone, Hallam, Jones), 2:00.44

100 Yard Backstroke – 1. Amaya Rocheleau, Kodiak 1:03.34; 2. Morgan Hagen, Kodiak 1:08.51; Jasmine Anderson, Colony 1:08.79; 4. Amaretta Settle, Colony 1:11.24; 5. Maria Anderson, Kenai Central 1:11.60; 6. Esme Wilder, Seward 1:11.83

100 Yard Breaststroke – 1. Charisma Watkins, Soldotna 1:14.93; 2. Nina Adams, Palmer 1:15.79; 3. Annabelle Franciscone, Homer 1:17.51; 4. Lia Jones, Kodiak 1:22.52; 5. Olivia Noffke, Colony 1:23.84; 6. Sierra Hershberger, Kenai Central 1:26.03

400 Yard Freestyle Relay – 1. Colony A (Houghton, Cooper, Benner, Miller), 3:54.77; 2. Kodiak (Narog, Wood, Jones, Rocheleau), 4:04.81; 3. Kenai Central (McDonald, Anderson, Price, Hershberger), 4:18.09; 4. Colony B (Blackburn, Edgar, Ligman, Wedekind), 4:28.02; 5. Soldotna (Collver, Goolsby, Wilcox, Roberts), 4:55.18; 6. Colony C (Backus, Noffke, Zemp, Fry), 5:35.52


Team Scores: 1. Seward, 58; 2. Soldotna, 51; 2. Kenai, 51; 4. Colony, 47; 5. Palmer, 45; 6. Kodiak, 28; 7. Homer, 27; 8. Cordova, 12; 9. Wasilla, 11

200 Yard Medley Relay – 1. Kenai (Anderson, Price, Merritt, Berga) 1:48.73; 2. Soldotna (Davidson, Reese, Monyahan, Abel), 1:53.12; 3. Palmer (Charton, Houser, Elledge, Doland), 1:53.69; 4. Seward (Ambrosiani, Trobaugh, Gates, Ambrosiani), 1:54.96; 5. Homer (Hennick, Nollar, Fry, Loukil), 1:55.48; 6. Colony (Settle, DenBleyker, Dhondt, Woodring), 1:57.90

200 Yard Freestyle – 1. Nikita Monyahan, Soldotna 1:54.45; 2. Isaiah Hulien, Colony 1:54.51; 3. Jackson Charton, Palmer 1:58.03; 4. James Berestoff, Kodiak 1:59.61; 5. Ethan Berga, Kenai Central 1:59.81; 6. Michael Davidson, Soldotna 2:07.20

200 Yard Individual Medley – 1. Max Reese, Soldotna 2:16.16; 2. Luke Nollar, Homer 2:17.36; 3. Isaiah Hulien, Colony 2:22.86; 4. Benjamin Merritt, Kenai Central 2:24.63; 5. Enoch Frederickson, Soldotna 2:27.22; 6. Reven Settle, Colony 2:28.75

50 Yard Freestyle – 1. Nickolas Ambrosiani, Seward 23.59; 2. Benjamin Doland, Palmer 23.91; 3. Jackson Charton, Palmer 23.92; 4. Connor Burnside, Kodiak 24.41; 5. Landen Woodring, Colony 24.62; 6. Iver Gates, Seward 24.93

1 Meter Diving – 1. Deshawn Cambell, Wasilla 246.20; 2. Craig Elledge, Palmer 205.20; 3. Calvin Musgrave, Wasilla 195.80; 4. Noah Coulter, Kodiak 184.00; 5. Derrick Jones, Soldotna 175.10; 6. Rowan Wyszkowski, Kodiak 145.80

100 Yard Butterfly – 1. Paxton Hill, Seward 56.60; 2. Jackson Bird, Seward 57.90; 3. Hunter Fry, Homer 58.05; 4. Ethan Berga, Kenai Central 58.79; 5. Kristofer Vangorder, Colony 1:01.97; 6. Benjamin Meritt, Kenai Central 1:02.30

100 Yard Freestyle – 1. Trent Fritsch, Cordova 50.96; 2. James Berestoff, Kodiak 52.29; 3. Benjamin Doland, Palmer 55.29; 4. Benn Abel, Soldotna 57.20; 5. Reven Settle, Colony 57.35; 6. Thomas Smith, Colony 57.79

500 Yard Freestyle – 1. Hunter Fry, Homer 5:05.66; 2. Samuel Anderson, Kenai Central 5:05.73; 3. Kellan DenBleyker, Colony 5:20.77; 4. Nikita Monyahan, Soldotna 5:27.19; 5. Enoch Frederickson, Soldotna 5:51.75; 6. Brogan Storms, Kenai Central 6:07.21

200 Yard Freestyle Relay – 1. Palmer (Houser, Doland, Elledge, Charton), 1:36.14; 2. Seward (Ambrosiani, Ambrosiani, Gates, Trobaugh), 1:38.06; 3. Soldotna (Reese, Abel, Jones, Monyahan), 4. Kodiak (Coulter, Hicks, Burnside, Berestoff), 1:42.06; 5. Homer (Loukil, Hennick, Nollar, Fry), 1:42.75; 6. Colony (Halstead, Mills-Price, Duguid, Lysdahl), 1:50.35

100 Yard Backstroke – 1. Samuel Anderson, Kenai Central 56.91; 2. Trent Fritsch, Cordova 57.53; 3. Bengimin Ambrosiani, Seward 59.18; 4. Paxton Hill, Seward 1:01.95; 5. Thomas Smith, Colony 1:04.18; 6. Connor Burnside, Kodiak 1:05.05

100 Yard Breaststroke – 1. Jackson Bird, Seward 1:07.21; 2. David Price, Kenai Central 1:07.46; 3. Max Reese, Soldotna 1:07.73; 4. Luke Nollar, Homer 1:09.31; 5. Kellan DenBleyker, Colony 1:14.29; 6. Aidan Houser, Palmer 1:15.76

400 Yard Freestyle Relay – 1. Colony A (DenBleyker, Settle, Hulien, Vangorder), 3:35.76; 2. Kenai Central (Berga, Price, Anderson, Merritt), 3:36.79; 3. Seward (Ambrosiani, Ambrosiani, Gates, Trobaugh), 3:42.34; 4. Kodiak (Burnside, Beaver, Hicks, Berestoff), 3:58.07; 5. Colony B (Dhondt, Duguid, Halstead, Smith), 4:05.71; 6. Soldotna (Frederickson, Jones, Jones, White), 4:10.87

Homer’s Carly Nelson and Colony’s Merica Miller celebrate after swimming the 50-yard freestyle at the SoHi Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer’s Carly Nelson and Colony’s Merica Miller celebrate after swimming the 50-yard freestyle at the SoHi Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Soldotna’s Benn Abel and Derrick Jones celebrate after swimming the 50-yard freestyle at the SoHi Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Soldotna’s Benn Abel and Derrick Jones celebrate after swimming the 50-yard freestyle at the SoHi Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer’s Annabelle Franciscone performs an open turn while swimming the 50-yard breaststroke at the SoHI Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer’s Annabelle Franciscone performs an open turn while swimming the 50-yard breaststroke at the SoHI Pentathlon on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

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