SPORTS PREVIEW: Synchro returns strong foundation of swimmers

FLHS grad returns as co-head coach

 

Juniors Jordyn Templeton and Rachel Chatwin and seniors Karlee Lawrence and Stephanie Brenk are the 2014 synchronized swimming captains. (Photo by Kat Ladwig)

Juniors Jordyn Templeton and Rachel Chatwin and seniors Karlee Lawrence and Stephanie Brenk are the 2014 synchronized swimming captains. (Photo by Kat Ladwig)

Kat Ladwig
Sports Editor

The Forest Lake synchronized swimming team is getting a partial face lift, as 2007 Ranger graduate Alissa Moberg returns to help take the helm alongside co-head coach Laura Davison for the 2014 season.

Moberg, who served as head coach of the Bloomington high school synchro team for four years while she attended college at the University of Minnesota, also spent time in Jamaica as the head coach of one of two synchro programs in the country and as acting coach of the Jamaican national program. She returned last year to assist the Rangers for the second half of their season. Moberg said the return to her alma mater feels right.

“It feels really natural,” Moberg said. “The alumni have such a strong connection to the program because Laura is so consistent as a head coach.

Wendy Chelberg, Ann Husfeldt and Amberly Shaw are also on board to assist the 66-member program.

The Rangers return much of their roster coming off a fourth-place finish at state. Perennial power Wayzata captured the title. Stillwater continues to be Forest Lake’s biggest challenge in the Suburban East Conference, and the Rangers should close in due to a large number of Ponies graduating after last season.

Leading the Ranger team by example will be all-state sophomore Andrea Dunrud, all-conference junior Rachel Chatwin and all-conference honorable mention juniors Stephanie Brenk and Lindsey Crohn. Brenk and Chatwin also join senior Karlee Lawrence and junior Jordyn Templeton as captains.

Making up the extended A team will be Dunrud, Brenk, Chatwin, Crohn, Lawrence and juniors Haley Schoonover, Jessica Dison and Jessica Walker.

Both head coaches said the extended A team and numerous solo, duet, trio and team entries have strong chances of placing in the top seven at state.

“We have depth,” Davison said. “Last year we were still young, but I think this is the start of the reaping years — our future looks bright.”

Moberg agreed and added that the competitiveness among the girls for spots will only make the team stronger, a necessity in order to reach its goal of returning to one of the top-three podium spots. The Rangers achieved that in 1999, 2010 and 2011.

“Last year we had such a strong group of swimmers that are returning and are just starting to realize their potential, and that’s really infectious,” Moberg said. “With so many underclassmen who had some really strong performances, there will always be someone fighting for a spot.”

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