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Sherwood girls roar in the relays

Swimming: The Lady Bowmen finish in seventh place in the team standings at state
by: DAN BROOD, SWIM SUCCESS — Sherwood’s (clockwise from top left) Casey Pollock, Mollie Norby, Shannon Bradley and Angel Woodard receive their third-place medals for the 200 medley relay.

GRESHAM - For the Sherwood High School girls swim team, the relays are something special.

For the Lady Bowmen, the relays are about friendship, they're trust-building and, oh yeah, it's something they're really good at.

With all three of their relays placing, the Sherwood girls swam their way to seventh place in the team standings at the Class 5A State Swimming Championships, which concluded Sunday at Mt. Hood Community College.

'We love the relays,' Sherwood junior Angel Woodard said during Sunday morning's state finals. 'They're really different. You know three others are counting on you - it's not just you, but you're counting on each other. We've got an amazing group of girls. We're all friends and that really helps.'

The Lady Bowmen took seventh place in the team standings at the state event with 15 points.

They got off to a strong start in Sunday's final as, in the first race of the day, the 200-yard medley relay, the Sherwood team of juniors Woodard, Shannon Bradley, Casey Pollock and Mollie Norby finished third in a time of 2 minutes, 1.17 seconds.

'It's exciting,' Woodard said after the team received its third-place medals. 'At the beginning of the season, we didn't even think we'd make finals, so to get third is great.'

Woodard started the race in the water first, swimming the backstroke leg.

'I love getting in the water first,' she said with a smile. 'I looked up at my team and they said `you got it.''

The Lady Bowmen medley relay team came into Sunday's finals as the No. 6 seed, but, with all four swimmers turning in strong legs, they moved up to the No. 3 spot.

'I guess we decided we wanted big medals,' Woodard said.

Later in the meet, the Sherwood girls 200 freestyle relay team of junior Elizabeth Bushnell, Norby, sophomore Mackenzie Bradley and Pollock placed sixth in the finals with a time of 1:47.87.

The Lady Bowmen capped off the meet by getting a fifth-place finish from its 400 freestyle relay team of Bushnell, Shannon Bradley, Woodard and Norby. That team turned in a time of 3:54.63. In addition, Shannon Bradley had a sixth-place finish in the 500 freestyle with her mark of 5:34.01.

The Sherwood boys also had some relay success at the state meet. The Bowmen combination of freshman Chance Woodard and sophomores Galen Peterson, Jordan Bigam and Nathan Ranno swam to fourth place in the 200 freestyle relay in 1:34.74.

The Sherwood boys finished in 12th place in the team standings with six points.