Travel delay does not slow Gunnison

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A bus accident that delayed the Gunnison swim team two hours didn't slow the Cowgirls in the pool Friday.

"For as small of a swim team (Gunnison) is, they have some great depth," Moffat County coach Jen Zimmerman said. "They came off a long bus ride and swam well."

The Cowgirls' bus slid off the road on the way to Craig. The bus had to be towed back on the road, and Gunnison didn't arrive to the pool until 5:30 --

2 1/2 hours later than scheduled.

The visitors won the first nine events in the dual and defeated the Bulldogs on senior night, 130-86.

For the first time, the Bulldogs had to adjust for not having former senior Katie Gainor. The four-year veteran and the fastest butterfly swimmer on the team graduated at semester and is no longer eligible to swim.

"You could see in our two freestyle relays how we missed her," Zimmerman said. "It will take some time for us to get used to not having her."

Two Bulldog seniors turned in performances that Zimmerman said were worth mentioning.

Senior Ashleigh McDonald won her final event at her home pool. She was one of three Bulldogs to win an event with a first-place swim in the 100-yard breaststroke.

Alyssa Pierson, who is a senior at Steamboat Springs but swims for the Bulldogs, finished third in both the 200 and 500 freestyle.

"Although it's not my school, my last home meet is still important to me," Pierson said. "I've spent enough time in this pool that is does feel like my school."

Caitlin Conci joined Mc----Don--ald as an individual champion. She won the 100 backstroke.

In the final event of the day, Moffat swimmers Kelsey Conci, Caitlin Conci, Vanessa Murray and Pierson won the 400 freestyle relay.

Another positive result for the Bulldogs was the time the second-place 200-medley relay team finished with. The team the two Concis, McDonald and Murray finished less than a second behind Gunnison's team in a state-qualifying 2:17.87.

"Probably our best swim was the medley team re-qualifying," Zimmerman said. "Vanessa has jumped in there in the butterfly for us, and it has gone well."

Other top-three finished for the Bulldogs were: 50 freestyle, Kelsey Conci second, Caitlin Conci third; 100 butterfly, Murray third; 200 freestyle relay (Murray, McDonald, Pierson, Kelsey Conci); 100 backstroke, Meghan Innes third; 100 breaststroke, Katie Knez third; 400 freestyle relay (Andria Dremel, Katrina Snowden, Jessica Knez, Innes) third.

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