They’re feeling confident about their individual races. — Whitney Nuci
By Daniel Mohrmann
The work that the Manitou Springs girls swim team has put together all season will come to a head this week as the team heads to the Class 3A state swim meet at the Veterans Memorial Aquatic Center in Thornton.
The state meet begins with the preliminary swims on Friday, Feb. 10, with finals taking place Saturday night.
On Feb. 3 and 4, the Mustangs competed at the Tri-Peaks League meet, where they finished fifth out of 10 teams. It wasn’t quite the performance they had in mind, but they have no time to dwell on that performance as they turn their attention to state.
“They tired,” coach Whitney Nuci said. “But they’re super excited for state because we have some girls that have never gone before. They’re feeling confident about their individual races.”
Despite not coming away with an individual title at leagues, the Mustangs did have some solid finishes through the meet. Selah Combs took third in the 50-yard freestyle, Summer Tenpas took fourth in the 100 butterfly and Theron Heim finished fifth in the 100 backstroke and fourth in the 200-individual medley.
The team also finished fifth in all three relay races.
As they turn now to state, the team has a renewed sense of pride as the general hope is to get several swimmers in finals for Saturday.
“We’ve improved a lot from where we were at the start of the season,” Heim said. “We’ve made a lot of progress as a team.”
Overall, Manitou is sending seven swimmers to compete in eight events throughout the meet. It’s a small squad compared to some of the traditional swimming powerhouses that will be there, but the Mustangs have confidence that they’ll be able to perform at a high level through the weekend.
“I will consider it a win if the girls come out of it confident with what they’ve done,” Nuci said. “Especially for the seniors.”
Preliminary races for the 3A swim meet begin at 10 a.m. Friday at the VMAC.
Delaney Bartko: 400-freestyle relay
Selah Combs: 50 freestyle, 100 freestyle, 200-medley relay, 200-freestyle relay
Theron Heim: 200-individual medley, 100 backstroke, 200-medley relay, 400-freestyle relay
Sophia Hyman: 50 freestyle, 100 freestyle, 200-medley relay, 200-freestyle relay
Sofiia Lobas: 50 freestyle, 200-freestyle relay, 400-freestyle relay
Grace McCumber: 200-freestyle relay, 400-freestyle relay
Summer Tenpas: 100 butterfly, 100 backstroke, 200-medley relay