Published Saturday, January 26, 2013 at 12:01 am / Updated at 1:09 am
Westside freshman Amato-Hanner stars

Elizabeth Amato-Hanner demonstrated again Saturday that she’s not just an average freshman swimmer.

Omaha Westside’s newest swim star won two events and helped lead the Warriors to a runner-up finish at the Warriors Swimming and Diving Invitational. Millard West won the girls meet 309-247.5 over Westside while Elkhorn/Elkhorn South won the boys meet 301-255 over Millard West.

Amato-Hanner won a head-to-head dual with Wildcat senior Erin Oeltjen in the 200-yard individual medley before grabbing the 100 butterfly title in 1:01.82.

In winning the 200 IM, Amato-Hanner moved to the top of the season leaders chart with a time of 2:10.78. Oeltjen wasn’t far off her season best by finishing second in 2:12.71.

Retiring Westside coach Doug Krecklow, who was honored before the meet for his 34 years and 20 team state championships at the school, said Amato-Hanner is an experienced swimmer who is adept at making quick adjustments.

“She’s very skilled, and she has a natural feel for the water,” Krecklow said. “She can take fewer strokes and go faster than a lot of her competitors. She’s racing at a pretty high level.”

On Jan. 12 Amato-Hanner competed in the USA Swimming Midwestern Association All-Star Central Zone meet in Lawrence, Kan. She joined several other swimmers no older than 14.

Amato-Hanner won the 200 IM that day in 2:07.12, a time that would put her at No. 9 on The World-Herald’s all-time list had the event taken place at a high school meet. Krecklow said Amato-Hanner also swam the 100 and 200 butterfly races, the 100 backstroke and the 200 breaststroke in addition to legs on freestyle relay teams.

Krecklow noted that Amato-Hanner was out all last week and didn't travel with the Warriors on their annual trip to Scottsbluff because she was ill. She only had five days of practice before Saturday's meet.

This week Krecklow reviewed some video of Amato-Hanner’s swims in Lawrence, and said he saw that she was able to make some quick adjustments.

“In three minutes of talk and three minutes of doing it, she fixed it,” Krecklow said.


Team scoring: Elkhorn/Elkhorn South 301, Millard West 255, Omaha Westside 203, Ralston/Omaha Gross 186, Grand Island 119, Bellevue West 119, Millard North 109, Scottsbluff-Gering 66, Kearney 65, Lincoln Pius X 49, Hastings 10.

Event winners: 200-yard medley relay: Elkhorn/Elkhorn South (Riley Herchenbach, Michael Mollak, Nick Kirklin, Willy Morris), 1:41.94. 200 freestyle: Mollak, 1:49.08. 200 individual medley: Jesse Holmes, E/ES, 2:06.88. 50 freestyle: Luke Van Wie, GI, 22.44. 1-meter diving: William Gottsch, E/ES, 425.35 points. 100 butterfly: Garrett Cadotte, Ralston/Omaha Gross, 54.09. 100 freestyle: Jon Wiebe, Scottsbluff-Gering, 50.31. 500 freestyle: Mollak, 4:54.69. 200 freestyle relay: Ralston/Omaha Gross (Cadotte, Jacob Quint, Will Ditter, Jake Ryan), 1:31.78. 100 backstroke: Matthew Prophit, MW, 56.07. 100 breaststroke: Zach Ogurek, BW, 1:01.65. 400 freestyle relay: Elkhorn/Elkhorn South (Kirklin, Morris, Holmes, Mollak), 3:22.45. 1,000 freestyle: Chris Beeman, BW, 10:21.62.


Team scoring: Millard West 309, Omaha Westside 247.5, Millard North 227, Elkhorn/Elkhorn South 206, Omaha Marian 178, Grand Island 155, Kearney 65.5, Ralston/Omaha Gross 47, Lincoln Pius X 36, Bellevue West 16.

Event winners: 200-yard medley relay: Grand Island (Cassandra Watts, S'Rah Koubek, Karl Wahlmeier, Edward Wahlmeier), 1:54.19. 200 freestyle: Taylor Korte, MW, 1:59.77. 200 individual medley: Elizabeth Amato-Hanner, Westside, 2:10.78. 50 freestyle: Wahlmeier, 25.51. 1-meter diving: Elizabeth Howorth, 477.95 points. 100 butterfly: Amato-Hanner, 1:01.82. 100 freestyle: Alexa Gross, Marian, 55.85. 500 freestyle: Ashlee Wigness-Lindaman, Westside, 5:21.65. 200 freestyle relay: Millard West (Shea Marcinski, Grace Mueller, Korte, Katherine McGinn), 1:43.36. 100 backstroke: Erin Oeltjen, MW, 59.97. 100 breaststroke: Yuan Yuan Jiang, E/ES, 1:10.42. 400 freestyle relay: Millard West (Korte, Marcinski, Tara Goss, Oeltjen), 3:42.39. 1,000 freestyle: Wigness-Lindaman, 11:00.24.

Contact the writer:


Contact the writer: Steve Beideck    |   402-618-4113    |  

Steve is a correspondent for The Omaha World-Herald and covers the Omaha Lancers and high school sports.

Each week during the high school sports season, highlights a matchup in the ongoing "Hiland Dairy Game of the Week" series. Previous matchups »

Refuel with Hiland »

< >
2013 All-Nebraska football, volleyball teams
View The World-Herald's selections to the 2013 All-Nebraska football and volleyball teams.
2013 Super Six football team
Meet The World-Herald's 2013 Super Six team, honoring the area's top college football prospects.
All-Nebraska basketball teams 'shake' it up
Being known more for their ability to shake off a defender than for their dance moves didn't stop our 2013 All-Nebraska basketball selections from busting a few "Harlem Shake"-inspired moves.
Facebook: Nebraska Prep Zone Page
The Nebraska Prep Zone Facebook page is your home on the social web to get the latest Nebraska prep sports news, photos, updates and more from around the Midlands.
Map: Nebraska Stadiums
Need help finding a stadium in the state of Nebraska? We've got you covered with this interactive map of high school and college facilities from across the state.
Nebraska high school all-time swimming leaders
See a complete list of the all-time leaders from Nebraska high school swimming and diving competition.
Nebraska high school all-time track charts
See a complete list of the all-time leaders from Nebraska high school track and field competition.
The disappearance of small-town football
Friday night lights across rural Nebraska are going dark. But one town, in its last season of gridiron independence, proved that school spirit is stronger than ever.
Western Iowa high school all-time track charts
See a complete list of the all-time leaders from Western Iowa high school track and field competition.