Boys swimming and diving: Gulon, Swenson headed to state for Detroit Lakes and Perham-New York Mills

The Detroit Lakes and Perham-New York Mills swimming and diving teams compete at the Section 5A meet in Alexandria on Saturday.

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Detroit Lakes' John Gulon swims the 100-yard backstroke on Saturday in Alexandria at the Section 5A meet. Gulon's second-place finish at 55.18 seconds set the new school record on Feb, 26, 2022.
Eric Morken / Forum News Service
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ALEXANDRIA – Detroit Lakes senior John Gulon made good on his promise of qualifying for state after missing last year by less than a second.

Gulon was the lone Laker to qualify for the 2022 Class A star tournament with a second-place finish in the 100-yard backstroke on Saturday at the Section 5A championships in Alexandria. He finished with a time of 55.18, which shattered the previous Detroit Lakes school record. This is Gulon’s first time at state since the 2019-20 season.

Perham-New York Mills’ Blake Swenson is also headed to Minneapolis in the 50-yard freestyle with a third-place finish. He qualified for state with a time of 23.01. Swenson is the only Yellowjacket to qualify. State begins on Mar. 5 at the University of Minnesota.

The Detroit Lakes 200-yard medley relay team of John Gulon, Zane Robers, Ryan Erickson and Micah Barberg celebrate their sixth-place finish on Feb. 26, 2022 at the Section 5A championships in Alexandria.
Contributed / Sam Gulon

Detroit Lakes took fifth as a team with a score of 175. The Lakers had eight top-10 finishes and a couple of close calls for other state berths. The 400-yard relay team of Gulon, Ryan Erickson, Zane Roberts and Micah Barberg took fourth place with a time of 3:41.71. Gulon also took fifth place in the 50-yard free with a time of 23.18.

Gulon, Erickson, Robers and Barberg finished in sixth place in the 200-yard medley relay with a time of 1:57.21. Erickson notched a pair of top-10 finishes in the 50-yard free (24.21, 10th) and 100-yard free (54.14, 8th). Micah Barberg capped off an impressive day with a 10th-place finish in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 1:06.27 Lane Yliniemi also took seventh place in the diving competition with a score of 277.


Perham collected six top-10 finishes, including Swenson’s state berth. He also took fifth in the 100-yard back (59.55) and swam in a pair of relays. Bjorn Anderson also took ninth in the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 5:45.87.

Perham took seventh place as a team with a score of 128. Alexandria won the section title with a 572. Melrose-Sauk Centre (463) and Fergus Falls (279) rounded out the top three.

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Detroit Lakes' Lane Yliniemi takes seventh in the Section 5A diving competition on Feb. 26, 2022 in Alexandria.
Eric Morken / Forum News Service


200Y MEDLEY RELAY- 6th- John Gulon, Ryan Erickson, Zane Roberts, Micah Barberg, Detroit Lakes, 1:57.21; 7th- Blake Swenson, Luke Becker, Domanik Hagen, Alex Mack, Perham, 2:06.03; 50Y FREE- 3rd- Swenson, Perham, State qualifier, 23.01; 5th- Gulon, Detroit Lakes, 23.18; 9th- Erickson, Detroit Lakes, 24.21; 100Y FREE- 8th- Erickson, Detroit Lakes, 54.14; 500Y FREE- 9th- Bjorn Anderson, Perham, 5:45.87; 200Y FREE RELAY- 7th- Becker, Mack, Max George, Anderson, Perham, 1:48.28; 8th- Luther Van Offelen, Zariah Wouters, Lane Yliniemi, Brian Morrison, Detroit Lakes 2:08.71; 100Y BACK- 2nd- Gulon, Detroit Lakes, State qualifier, School record, 55.18; 5th- Swenson, Perham, 59.55; 10th- Barberg, Detroit Lakes, 1:06.27; 400Y FREE RELAY- 4th- Gulon, Erickson, Roberts, Barberg, Detroit Lakes, 3:41.71; 6th- George, Anderson, Hagen, Swenson, Perham, 4:03.19; DIVING- 7th- Lane Yliniemi, Detroit Lakes 277.0

Jared Rubado is the sports editor for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and the Perham Focus. He moved to the area in September of 2021 after covering sports for the Alexandria Echo Press for nearly three years. Jared graduated from the University of Augustana in 2018 with degrees in journalism and sports managment.
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