Freshman Joanna Dohrman Qualifies for State in Two Events


Credit to Brayton Larson

By Heidi Hauptman, North Star Staffer

There are few people who qualify for State in high school, and it is even more rare for a freshman to do so. However, Joanna Dohrman is a freshman who has already qualified to go to State in the 500 freestyle and the 200 individual medley.

“Right now I have a lot of emotions about State,” Dohrman said. “I don’t really know what to expect. I think it will just be fun to see what it is like and compete against swimmers that I don’t see during the rest of the season.”

Coming into high school, Dohrman’s goal for her first swim season was to make it to State in the 500 freestyle event. Qualifying for State in swimming is different compared to other sporting events. A swimmer has to meet or get under a certain time for that event set by the state of Missouri. This can be done at any meet of the regular season. Joanna qualified for the 500 freestyle at the first meet of the season on Dec. 12 and for the 200 individual medley at the sixth meet of the season on Jan. 7. Along with Dohrman, junior Erin Stock has also qualified for State.

“When I found out that I had qualified for State, I was really excited,” Dohrman said. “It’s really cool because I will get to go to State with some of my friends. It was also just really great to realize that I made it and that I had reached my goal.”

Dohrman is also trying to qualify for State in the 200 freestyle and the 100 breaststroke. She already swam the qualifying time she needs for the 200 freestyle, but since it was not in a high school competition, she could not qualify for State. For the 100 breaststroke, Dohrman is 1.41 seconds off from a time that would get her to State.

“Joanna works incredibly hard during the season,” Karen Whitten, head girls’ swim coach, said. “She always wants to stay and work and do her best. I think that she has a lot of natural ability and I think that her work ethic reflects and supports that. I expect her to make State in the other events. That’s something that I am really looking forward to because I think that she will. She definitely has a love for swimming.”