High School swimming preview: SaberCats should be state contenders

High School swimming preview: SaberCats should be state contenders


High School swimming preview: SaberCats should be state contenders


It was almost an afterthought to what was going on at the Class 5A state championships last season.

With then-to-be Olympian Missy Franklin stealing the spotlight, Fossil Ridge High School’s girls swimming team quietly walked away the state champions.

The SaberCats beat Cherry Creek by one point, needing a second-place showing in the final event (400 freestyle relay) to secure the school’s first state title in any sport.

Franklin won a pair of state titles that day, but Fossil Ridge also had its swimmers shine on the state’s biggest stage.

Rhianna Williams won state titles in the 50 and 100 freestyle events, while freshman Bailey Nero claimed a state championship in the 100 butterfly.

Those two return this season for the SaberCats, who should once again contend for a state championship. Also returning is Sammie Guay, a junior who won a state title in the 200 individual medley as a freshman.

Look for Fossil Ridge once again to battle Cherry Creek and Regis Jesuit for second consecutive state championship. Franklin, who won five medals — four gold — in the Olympics this past summer, plans to compete in her senior season at Regis.

The Coloradoan wraps up its winter sports previews with a look at the area’s swimming and diving teams:


* Coach: Betsy Rogers, seventh season

* Last year: 19th at state

* Top swimmers: Tessa Thull, jr.; Elise Mooney, sr.; Jill Remmers, sr.; Michelle Kramer, jr.; Audrey Oweimrin, jr.

* Notes: Thull placed 13th at state last season in the 200 individual medley. The Lambkins also scored points at state with their 200 free relay (11th) and 200 medley (13th) relay teams … Collins qualified seven girls for state last season, including returners Mooney, Remmers and Kramer.

* Coach’s comment: NA


* Coach: Carolyn Fries, sixth season

* Last year: Class 5A state champions

* Top swimmers: Rhianna Williams, sr.; Bailey Nero, so.; Sammie Guay, jr.; Jazmyn Markel, so.; Quinn Fawcett, so.; Riley Hoffman, so.; Sarah Beard, jr.

* Notes: The SaberCats won the Class 5A state championship last season, the first state title in any sports for the school. Fossil Ridge edged Cherry Creek by one point to win the championship in their home pool at Edora Pool Ice Center … Williams won a pair of state championships last season, winning the 50 and 100 freestyle … Nero, as a freshman, won a state title in the 100 butterfly … The SaberCats sent nine individuals to state last season.

* Coach’s comment: NA


* Coach: Kelsey Bailey, second season

* Last year: Did not score at state

* Top swimmers: Marissa Bradley, jr.

* Notes: The Impalas sent only one individual, then-senior Sarah Woods, to state last season.

* Coach’s comment: NA


* Coach: Wendy Mader, fifth season

* Last year: 2-6 in duals, 29th at state

* Top swimmers: Adele Waites, sr.; Sian Kopcik, so.; Alexis Badalamenti, jr.; Andi Johnston, fr.; Analise Iwanski, fr.; Daphne Williams, fr.

* Notes: The Lobos qualified their 200 freestyle relay team for state last season. It finished 13th … Mader said the team has solid depth this season and a group of newcomers with a lot of swimming experience.

* Coach’s comment: “We have a large group of swimmers this year with a good combination of experienced racers and beginners who are really working hard.”


* Coach: Mandy Schneider, first season

* 2011-12 record: Won all dual meets except one

* Top swimmers: Madison Evans, sr.; Kaiti Roush, sr.; Lacey Whitehead, fr.; Alexy Waterman, so.

* Coach’s comment: “I am very excited for this season. We have a young team, however. We have strong senior leadership and very dedicated swimmers ready to work hard for the team.”

Follow reporter Jeff Bersch at twitter.com/Coloradoan_JB.


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