Demons place 13th at 4A swimming state championship
Competing at the Veterans Memorial Aquatic Center in Thornton, the Glenwood Springs High School boys swim team participated in the 4A State Championship, placing 13th out of 66 teams, 26 of whom scored points in the two-day championship meet.
Following a very fast preliminary session on Friday, the Glenwood boys swam well enough to qualify two relays and four individual events for Saturday’s finals session out of their three relays and eight individual events. The Glenwood 200 medley relay started off the championship final day with a second place finish in the consolation final. The relay team was able to move up from its preliminary finish of 13th overall to a 10th place finish.
After finishing last year’s state meet with a seventh place finish in the 100 backstroke, senior Zeb Thorsen came to Thornton with a determination to improve his performance, according to Glenwood head coach Steve Vanderhoof. Thanks to an outstanding swim in the preliminary heats, Thorsen saw himself again in that seventh position.
Heading into the final Saturday, Thorsen was off to swim his final individual event of his successful high school career.
Behind a very fast start in the highly competitive final, Thorsen came from behind to out-touch a competitor from Littleton High School and claim sixth place in the state with a time of 54.87. Thorsen also swam the 200 individual medley in the consolation finals, where he swam a personal season-best time of 2:03.36 to finish in 13th place overall.
The other outstanding performance for Glenwood was a top 16 finish by Cole Petersen. The freshman swam well enough to finish 12th place overall in the 500 yard freestyle. Finishing with a personal best time of 4:56.30, Peterson put himself in a position to get better and better in the coming years. Peterson had another great swim in the 200 individual medley, finishing in 15th place, 2:04.35, and swimming another personal best time.
In the final event of the day, Glenwood came back with a determined focus, according to Vanderhoof. After finishing 13th in the preliminaries of the 400 free relay, the Demons were able to improve their time by 4.31 seconds to take third in the consolation final to place 11th overall.
In the process, Phillip Hecksel, Jonus Ortega, Petersen and Thorsen were able to all swim individual best times and break the school record in the event.
BEARS PLACE THIRD AT 4A STATE TOURNAMENT
On day two of the 4A girls state golf tournament, the Rifle Bears placed third overall, shooting a 546 over the two-day tournament, finishing behind Colorado Academy (468) and Cheyenne Mountain (520).
Individually for Rifle, sophomore Elly Walters finished sixth overall with a two-round score of 159 (81 on day two), while freshman Masi Smith shot a two-day 161 to finish seventh. Caitlin Morgan added a 226 to cap off a strong performance by the Bears.
Glenwood Springs’ Lauren Murphy finished 26th with a two-day score of 189, while Coal Ridge’s Cheyenne Williams finished 55th with a two-day score of 198.
HOLE IN ONE
On the No. 4 tee at the Ranch at Roaring Fork Golf Course, Per Guldbrandsgaard hit an 8-iron 87 yards into the cup for the hole in one. Guldbrandsgaard’s hole-in-one was witnessed at the Ranch at Roaring Fork Golf Course by Inge Fehr.
RIFLE ATHLETICS ACADEMIC HONORS
Rifle’s varsity athletic teams achieved some great success in the classroom this year with 64 students receiving Academic All-State First Team awards and 22 more receiving Honorable Mentions, according to Rifle athletic director Troy Phillips.
To qualify for these awards, the students had to be either a junior or senior varsity letter recipient.
Additionally, to receive first team the student must have a 3.6 or higher GPA.
Those with 3.3 to 3.59 GPA’s were honorable mention.
Rifle also had seven varsity athletic teams receive the Les Schwab Academic Team award. To receive this award the team must have a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher.
Those teams achieving the award included boys’ golf (3.63), girls’ cross country (3.84), volleyball (3.75), cheerleading/spirit (3.61), girls’ basketball (3.64), baseball (3.69) and girls’ golf (3.60).
Both baseball and cheerleading were academic state champions for having the highest GPA in the 4A level for their sports.
It was the second straight championship for cheerleading and third straight championship for baseball.
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Local teams just missed out on qualifying for state as teams but will be sending individual representatives following Friday’s regional meets.