Sister act — making waves at state meet

Wittmers — Emma and Rachel — haul in plenty of medals

By Marc Lunde

Emma and Rachel Wittmer are the kind of kids who don’t say much. They let their performance do the talking.

Both sisters were runners-up for individual points in their respective age categories at the 2008 USA Swimming Minnesota 12-and-under state championships at the Rochester Recreation Center on Saturday.


"They’re great, every coaches dream," Rochester Orcas coach Steve Varney said.

Emma, 10, was the only Rochester swimmer to win an event, taking down both the 50-yard butterfly and 50 freestyle.

"I thought I might be able to get on the podium," Emma said. "It’s a great feeling to be here, just getting to swim."

Rachel set five personal-best times in six races. The 8-year-old got used to the podium, finishing as high as second.

The races for top point-getter were close. Emma, with 136 total points, beat out the third-place swimmer by one point in the 9-10 age division.

Rachel tied with 98 points for runner-up in the 8-and-under division.

"Emma is very dedicated, focused, and listens to what you say. "She isn’t afraid of success or hard work," Varney said.

"Rachel is more of a free-spirited swimmer, and I don’t think she is quite aware of what she can do."


Taylor Bass of Rochester swam unattached to any team. The 12-year-old’s points were not accredited to any program, but her 116 total was good enough for fifth in the 11-12 girls division.

She took second in the 100 free with a personal-best 55.81 seconds.

Page D4: Orcas finish fifth

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