CHESTERTON | Wheeler senior Danielle Radosevich has qualified for the IHSAA state finals twice, but she's never won a sectional title.
That all could change in two days. The Valparaiso transfer claimed the top seed in the 100-yard back (59.36 seconds) at Thursday's prelims, and now she's looking forward to Saturday's finals.
"I feel really great; I'm excited," said Radosevich who swam at state for the Vikings as a freshman and sophomore. "I was just hoping to match my seed time (1:01.6), but this is the fastest I've been since senior state (last summer).
"I think I can go even faster. Now I just need someone to race."
That shouldn't be a problem as Chesterton senior Maddie Miller is right on Radosevich's heels (59.5). Miller has won the sectional back crown two of the last three years.
"I haven't really been pushed all season," Radosevich said. "But I know I will now."
Miller was just part of Chesterton's dominating effort in the prelims.
The host Trojans have a great shot to win their 13th straight title, notching eight top seeds. Chesterton has three swimmers among the top six spots in eight individual events, including three of the top four in the 200 IM, 100 free, 500 free, 100 back and 100 breast.
"We had our fair share of best times," Chesterton coach Kevin Kinel said. "Our kids are pretty healthy ... By in large, we were pretty solid. We're looking forward to Saturday."
Portage senior Sierra King is also looking forward to the finals, where she'll try to win her fourth consecutive 100 breast title.
She's in prime position, since she once again has the top seed (1:08.01).
"I just went out there to go as fast as I could," King said. "I still haven't shaved yet or put on my fast suit, so hopefully I can drop more time.
"The only pressure I have is that I'm putting on myself. I really want to do this."