‘Cudas swim strong in Montrose | PostIndependent.com

‘Cudas swim strong in Montrose

Phil Sandoval
Post Independent Staff

This weekend’s swim meet in Montrose was a “last-chance” opportunity for athletes to qualify for postseason championship events later this month.

The mind set of the Sopris Barracudas was different.

Using the summer’s regular-season meet as a tune-up for what’s ahead, many of the local swim club’s members zipped to fine performances.

Jennifer Betts earned one of the Barracudas’ six individual first-place finishes while setting a season-best time of 2 minutes, 19.74 seconds in the girls 15-and-older 200-meter freestyle.

Her best time came in the 800 free, where Betts slashed a whopping 47-plus seconds off her previous best in a second-place finish of 10:26.12. The rising senior from Glenwood Springs also racked up runner-up finishes in the 50, 100 and 400 freestyles.

Keely Roberts’ success in the 11-12 girls competition came close to matching that of Betts. The 12-year-old Aspen resident won the 50-meter breast stroke in 41.90, finished second in a season-best time of 1:22.58 in the individual medley, and recorded three more second-place times in the 50 freestyle, 50 butterfly and 100-meter breast stroke.

Not to be outdone, the Barracudas’ younger swimmers also earned a cache of honors.

Eleven-year-old Alida Eide won the 11-12 girls 100-meter backstroke in 1:28.46, an improvement of more than eight seconds, and set a season-best in the 50 back.

Jack Cassidy, 9, had the fastest swim ” 51.82 ” among boys 10 and younger in the 50 fly, along with third-place marks in the 50 free and 100 fly.

Lily Thorsen, another 9-year-old, won the 9-10 girls 200-meter freestyle in a season-best mark of 3:01.32 and earned a third-place ribbon in the age group’s 200 individual medley.

The Barracudas also clocked two winning swims ” both relays ” in the 8-and-younger girls meet.

The quartet of Danielle Forrestall, Charlton Mechling, Mariela Martinez and Jessica Tuttle won the 100-meter free relay in 1:50.29. Martinez, Mechling and Tuttle, with Leah Scholl in the No. 3 position, posted a 2:13.09 mark in the medley relay.

At the Western Blue sectional meet in Federal Way, Wash., last weekend, Emily McDonald swam the women’s 50 meters freestyle in 27.41. Competing in a starting field of 137 swimmers, McDonald’s time was the eighth-best of the event.

Against a group of 143 athletes in the 100-meter freestyle, McDonald finished with a seasonal best time of 59.08, good for 10th place. Fellow Barracudas swimmer Sierra Grove, in her first appearance at the sectional level, came in at 1:03.96 in the 100 free.

The entire team will be on hand for this weekend’s Western Slope Championship meet at the indoor Orchard Mesa municipal pool in Grand Junction, Barracudas coach Howard Jay said.

Action opens with swimmers 8-and-younger at 10 a.m. Friday. Events for the 9-10, 11-12, 13-14 and 15-and-older divisions start at 1 p.m., then continue through Sunday.

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