Barracudas earn wins in bunches |

Barracudas earn wins in bunches

CARBONDALE – Between the blare of vintage rock music and the shouts of vendors selling various treats and trinkets around the perimeter of John Fleet Municipal Pool, it was hard to imagine a swim meet was going on.

Once inside the pool’s gates, it was a different world.

There was some serious swimming occurring over this past weekend.

The Sopris Barracuda swim team were the cause, hosts, and the dominant team of the three-day, 13-team event, which drew more than 350 competitors as a prelude to this week’s Strawberry Days festival.

And given the chance, the Barracudas shimmered in the Fleet pool’s waters.

Especially Alina Roberts.

The Aspen resident, who has been swimming for Glenwood Springs High School for the past three years, racked up wins in seven individual events.

Competing in the senior girls division for swimmers 15 and older, Roberts had victorious times in the 50-meter freestyle, both backstroke events, and the 100-meter breaststroke and butterfly.

She then completed her winning streak by posting winning times in the individual medley and 800 freestyle.

But another Roberts served notice this weekend.

Ten year-old Keely Roberts, Alina’s younger sister, ended the 9-10 girls division with three gold medals and two third-place marks.

Those accomplishments almost overshadowed Emily McDonald’s performance.


The 14 year-old, who will be a freshman at Glenwood High this fall, came through with another eye-popping effort.

With an eye-trained toward the Junior Olympic meet in Fort Collins later this summer, McDonald earned six goals competing in the 13-14 girls division.

Her wins included three freestyle events, the 100 meter back, butterfly and breaststroke and the 200 meter butterfly.

And glancing at the final marks – the entire 13-14 Barracuda girls team were almost impossible to beat.

Of the 33 top three available places in the division’s 11 individual events, Sopris swimmers earned 21.

McDonald, along with teammates Jennifer Betts and Eleanor Chandler, completed a one-two-three sweep of the 100 freestyle.

Betts, who earned victories in the 200 back and 800 freestyle, paced a second Barracuda clean sweep in the 800 free, aided by Allison Schaiburger and Chandler.

In the 11-12 division, Sierra Grove was the Barracudas’ lead swimmer.

The 12 year-old brought home three golds and two silvers.

Grove’s best effort was a 43-second victory over Janea Kindall of the Meeker Makos in the 400 meter freestyle, where the Sopris swimmer posted a 5 minute, 29.66 second time.

But this was not just a girls meet.

The Barracuda boys scored some outstanding swims too.

Jonathan Jay won the senior boys 200 and 400 meter freestyle and the 200 individual medley.

Luke Jacob had three second-place and two third-place marks in the 9-10 division. And Craig Riggins earned two silver medals and a bronze in the 11-12 year-old division.

Other local swimmers were able to shine as well.

Bobby Gucwa of Glenwood, swimming unattached in the senior boys division, won the 100 meter breaststroke and took second in the 50 freestyle.

Rifle Stingray swimmer Jessica Stilson earned the senior girls 200 breaststroke championship. Her teammate Jonathan Cappelli finished second in the 13-14 boys 100 back and third in the 200 breaststroke.

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