Bella Passamani has cemented her place in New Berlin Eisenhower history.
The junior became just the third swimmer in school history to win a state championship, as she won the 100-yard butterfly at the WIAA Division 2 state meet on Nov. 11 at the University of Wisconsin Natatorium.
Eisenhower took fourth place as a team with 148 points, finishing behind Edgewood (337 points), McFarland (224) and Grafton (180).
Passamani won the 100 butterfly with a time of 56.27, coming in 0.28 seconds ahead of sophomore Katie Hayes of Brown Deer/University School.
"State is a very interesting swim meet," Eisenhower coach Alyssa Bauer said. "Our girls are usually rested for sectionals, and then need to perform at a high level again for state. This year, I waited to fully taper Bella until state. This paid off big time.
"She put up a very good race. She was not in first after the first 50 (yards). During the third 25, Bella decided she wanted to race the rest of the pool and turned her tempo up. On the last 25, she dug in and passed everyone up."
She joins Alli Bellford and Katie Schmaling as state champions from Eisenhower. Bellford won state titles in the 50 freestyle in 2010 and 2011, while Schmaling earned consecutive crowns in the 100 backstroke in 1999 and 2000.
"Honestly, the 100 fly was all adrenaline," Passamani said. "It was just going out there and racing. I felt really good after. It was a good race.
"I'm still in shock that I was able to win. I just feel honored to be able to represent my school and to be with those top swimmers. Now I can be on the board and have my name next to the state champion title. It is just really cool."
Passamani also took second place in the 500 freestyle in 5:04.66, finishing behind University of Nebraska commit and Grafton senior Autumn Haebig, who set a new a new WIAA Division 2 state meet record with a time of 4:47.79.
"It was great to be able to race someone as good as Autumn Haebig," Passamani said. "It was really fun to be able to go out there and race. Knowing I already had a medal, there was no pressure. I was able to go out there and have fun."
Sophomore Maddie Guman took third place in the 100 backstroke with a time of 58.71. The Lions also earned a medal in the 200 medley relay by coming in fourth with the team of Guman, freshman Anna Oleniczak, junior Emma Oleniczak and Passamani.
Anna Oleniczak took seventh in the 200 IM in 2:12.73 and eighth in the 100 breaststroke in 1:08.46. Emma Oleniczak came in 10th in the 100 butterfly in 1:00.53 and 14th in the 100 breaststroke in 1:12.38; Guman was 11th in the 100 freestyle in 54.65; and junior Brooke Sullivan took 15th in the 1-meter dive with a score of 308.30.
The team of Anna Oleniczak, Emma Oleniczak, Guman and Passamani also placed seventh in the 400 freestyle relay in 3:40.69.
"Fourth place in the state is a massive accomplishment," Bauer said. "I am very proud of each of my swimmers and my diver. We couldn't have done it without each part of our team."