Demons win Regional swimming title
Maybe it was the shirt.
For two days, coach Lynn Cassidy wore a top with the words “Bring it On” across the front. It was an attitude Glenwood Springs maintained throughout the Western Slope Girls Swimming and Diving Championships.
The Demons knew they had the best team in the water.
And they knew it would take career marks from the other top contenders – Durango, Montrose or Grand Junction – to wrest the team championship away from the Demons.
The marks weren’t there.
And Glenwood Springs bested Montrose 378-292 for the first Regional title in the five-year history of the girls swim program. Durango, with 247 points, was third. Grand Junction finished fourth.
Outside of being tossed into the Montrose Aquatic Center’s pool by the entire team, coach Cassidy admitted that winning the school’s first Regional title had yet to skin in.
So, she let her team do the talking.
“We’re so pumped. We’ve been trying to do this for so many years and it finally happened,” said the combination of Michelle McReynolds and Bridget Jankovsky.
“This is one of the most exciting times … we did it as a team and every single person had a hand in it.”
“We had so much team spirit,” McReynolds added. “It was awesome.”
The Demon divers played a key role in Glenwood’s title.
The divers took first, second, third and eighth, accumulating 46 points.
“It was fun … because it makes the divers part of the team,” said Patty Schaffner, the Demon dive coach.
Kelly Hauskins won the Regional diving championship by totaling 465.40 points, besting her teammate Amy Ackerman by 37.0 points.
The junior earned the highest individual dive score of the finals. Hauskins’ third dive, a forward dive with two somersaults, was her best. She earned a 9.0, an 8.5, two 8.0s and a7.5 from the judges, with the high and low scores tossed out.
“I’m very proud of my girls,” Schaffer said. “They’ve worked hard under very excruciating circumstances,” she said of the diving practices held outdoors at the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool.
The coach said she was pleased with Hauskins’ performance and noted that the only strategy for the meet was to have fun.
“We put our list together (Friday), so that had nothing to do with what we did today,” Schaffner said. “I told the girls that they would all be in the finals, so I wanted them to end with three dives that were fun and comfortable.”
With the diving points in hand, the Demon swimmers took over.
Freshman Rachel Rey was involved in three of Glenwood’s five first-place times at Saturday’s swim finals.
She won the 200- and 500-yard freestyle events and swam a leg on the Demons’ 200- and 400-yard free relays.
Rey was the only competitor to break the two-minute barrier in the 200 free, clocking a 1:59.71, finishing nearly a pool length ahead of Morgan Baines of Grand Junction.
In the 500 free, while coasting to a 5:27.28, she defeated teammate McReynolds and Baines.
She followed the individual races by completing the Demons’ 1:43.09 winning time in the 200 free relay with Kelci Barnes, Alina Roberts and Tess Jankovsky.
Roberts’ hopes of an individual gold came after the relay win.
She finished the 100 backstroke in 1:00.53 to edge Montrose’s Leigh Dodd for first place. Earlier the Aspen High School sophomore, who swims for the Demons because her school does not field a swim team, just missed another first place in the 50 free, won by Andrea Weiser of Montrose.
The Demons now can set their sights on medals at the State 4A Swimming Championships next weekend in Fort Collins.
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