Instead of a fish, the Durango Swim Club swimmers should be looking to make like Joci Earl.
At the MAValanche Invitational on January 19-21 in Grand Junction, the 12-year-old Earl had a breakout swim meet: She dropped time and made the finals in every event and dropped five secodns off her 200-yard freestyle to hit a Silver State time.
The swim club also got a bevy of first-place finishes, some state qualifiers and plenty of personal records:
Casey Hamilton, 12, placed first in the 100 and 500 freestyle, 50, 100 and 200 backstroke, 100 butterfly and in the 200 and 400 individual medley.
Mira Joyner, 12, placed first in the 100 free, 200 back, 50 fly and 200 inidividual medley.
“She has been working extremely hard towards her goals and is reaching them each meet,” DSC head coach Suzanne Schieltz said in a news release to The Durango Herald. “She has been working on her technique more in practice, and it’s paying off in these meets.”
Berr Kilgo, 13, placed first in the 1 mile, dropping 1 minute, 15 seconds off his time.
“Berr can swim all day,” Schieltz said.
Jesse Rubenstein, 16, won the 50-yard free in 22.89 seconds. He also took second in the 100- and 200-yard freestyle.
Josh Miller, 17, set a personal-best time in the 200-yard breaststroke and placed second overall in the 100 breast.
“It was really great to see Josh so excited and animated after his swims,” Schieltz said. “He finally had the kind of meet to show him that all his hard work really does pay off.”
Ben Miller, 14, qualified for the state meet in the 200 and 500 free and the 100 back. He dropped time in all his events, finally breaking the two-minute barrier in the 200 free at 1:59.87.
Lacey Hoselton, 13, dropped eight seconds in her 500 free, dropped some time in her 100 back and 200 breast and set a personal record in her 200 individual medley by dropping six seconds.
New swimmer James Mars, 9, dropped five seconds from his 50 freestyle time, showing some perseverance after his inexperience caused a couple of disqualifications in other events.
“James has a lot of personality, making everyone laugh with his facial expressions and silly comments,” Schieltz said. “He had a rough couple of events, but he stuck with it and swam tough. We’re glad to have him.”
The DSC will swim at the state meet in Fort Collins on March 8-10.
“We hope our current successes show the Durango community that swimming is a great activity for young people, a lifelong sport, and hopefully we can recruit some of the strong, young athletes in La Plata County to join us and have some fun,” Schieltz said.
The Durango Swim Club is taking new swimmers and has tryouts from 3:30 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. For more information, contact Schieltz at 779-8643 or at firstname.lastname@example.org