Summit swimming and diving team strong in first meet |

Summit swimming and diving team strong in first meet

summit daily news
Summit County, Colorado
Summit Daily/Mark Fox

FARMER’S KORNER – The first meet of a season always comes with a bit of extra anxiety. But when more than half of your team has never swam competitively before – which is the case with the Summit High girls’ squad this year – the nerves are amped up even more.

“We had so many new girls, and they were all really nervous and kinda scared at the beginning,” said Tiger junior Dani Langevin, “but they did really good.”

With eight top-five finishes on the night, the SHS girls’ swimming and diving team started its season off in impressive fashion in a tri-meet Thursday at home.

“The biggest highlight of the meet was how we have so many new girls this year, and they were so nervous and were scared and worried about the meet tonight and did great,” SHS head coach Jenny Wischmeyer said. ” … There’s a lot to pull together, and they did an awesome job for never having swam competitively before.”

Although the Tigers wound up third behind both Lakewood and Golden, Wischmeyer wasn’t concerned with placing as much as times.

“It’s a team sport, and there’s a team score, but so much of it is how well they do individually and how much they improve through the season,” she said. “This is a good start.”

And Summit had a number of girls start off the season on a high note, though none more impressive than the team’s two divers. Competing against two girls from each of the other two schools, juniors Gabi Ketzenbarger and Rachel Lawlis finished first and second, respectively, in the meet. Ketzenbarger’s final score of 120.10 just barely beat out Lawlis’s 118.95.

“They did great, and I’m really proud of them,” Tiger diving coach Joe Baldwin said. “In practice, they were perfect, and I just told them if they’d done what they did in practice, (their scores) would have been way up there. … It was awesome, though, exceeded my expectations for the first meet.”

One of the Tigers’ top swimming performances on the night came from junior Katie Lowe, who finished fourth in the 100-yard butterfly. Her time of 1:24.46 was her personal best by nearly six seconds.

“That’s kind of the event that she wants to focus on this year, and she swam a smart race and is in great shape,” Wischmeyer said of Lowe.

Wischmeyer also commended the efforts of freshman Olya Aden, who had impressive finishes in both the 200-yard freestyle (seventh place) and the 500-yard freestyle (fifth place).

“It was a lot of fun,” Aden said of the meet. ” … I really want to pace myself, because I really don’t want to go all out and get tired before the end (of the 500 free).”

Langevin had an impressive showing in the 100-yard backstroke (seventh place), as did seniors Cody Seaboldt (eighth) and Ashley Petersen (ninth).

Senior Kayla Gray finished fourth in the 200-yard IM and earned a time of 1:04.33 in the 100-yard freestyle.

Overall, Langevin said her team couldn’t have been more pleased with its performance.

“For our last meet, for leagues, that’s when we should be getting our personal records and things,” she said. “So, right now, we’re not in our best shape yet, but we hopefully will be by the end.”

The Tigers are back in action at the D’Evelyn Invite at the Colorado School of Mines Saturday at 9 .m.

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