Eryn Leonard, a Moffat County High School junior, posted three state-qualifying times in the MCHS girls varsity swimming team’s first meet Friday at Glenwood Springs High School. Leonard won the 100-yard butterfly, took second in the 200-yard individual medley and helped lead the 200-yard freestyle relay to a second-place finish.

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Eryn Leonard, a Moffat County High School junior, posted three state-qualifying times in the MCHS girls varsity swimming team’s first meet Friday at Glenwood Springs High School. Leonard won the 100-yard butterfly, took second in the 200-yard individual medley and helped lead the 200-yard freestyle relay to a second-place finish.

MCHS junior posts 3 state-qualifying times in season's 1st swim meet

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Results ...

Top individual finishers from the Moffat County High School girls varsity swimming team’s meet Friday at Glenwood Springs High School:

(Name — event — place — time)

• Eryn Leonard — 100-yard butterfly — 1 — 1:02.84

• Eryn Leonard — 200-yard individual medley – 2 — 2:24.48

• Adrienne Wix — 200-yard freestyle — 2 — 2:38.73

• Hannah Kirk — 50-yard freestyle — 2 — 30.22

• Moffat County — 200-yard medley relay — 2 — 2:18.7

• Moffat County — 200-yard freestyle relay — 2 — 1:57.98

• Moffat County — 400-yard freestyle relay — 3 — 5:47.44

• Micah Espinosa — 100-yard freestyle — 3 — 1:18.36

• Riley Johnston — 500-yard freestyle — 3 — 9:38.56

• Laurel Tegtman — 100-yard breaststroke — 3 — 1:26.43

Top individual finishers from the Moffat County High School girls varsity swimming team’s meet Saturday at Aspen High School:

• Moffat County — 200-yard freestyle relay — 1 — 1:57.49

• Moffat County — 200-yard medley relay — 3 — 2:22.74

• Eryn Leonard — 100-yard butterfly — 2 — 1:03.94

• Eryn Leonard — 500-yard freestyle — 2 — 6:08.16

• Micah Espinosa — 100-yard freestyle — 3 — 1:19.73

When Eryn Leonard jumped out of the pool for the last time Friday at Glenwood Springs High School, the 2011-12 girls swimming season was only nine events old.

Yet Leonard, a Moffat County High School junior, had recorded her third state-qualifying time in the Bulldogs’ first meet.

Leonard finished the 200-yard individual medley race in 2 minutes and 24.48 seconds to take second place. Two events later, the junior won the 100-yard butterfly in 1:02.84.

In her final event, the 200-yard freestyle relay, Leonard led the Bulldogs off with a 26.49-second 50-yard swim en route to another second-place finish.

All three times were good enough to qualify Leonard for the Feb. 10 and 11 state swim meet in Thornton.

“In the 100-yard butterfly, I expected about 1:03, but when I swam under 1:02, I was surprised,” Leonard said. “I just went out there and swam my hardest and picked up when I needed to so I could finish hard.”

Leonard needed to swim 2:26 in the 200-yard individual medley, 1:06.3 in the 100-yard butterfly and 26.6 in the 50-yard freestyle to qualify for state.

Coach Meghan Francone said all three seasons she has coached Leonard, she has always been more than ready for the first meet.

“Eryn runs cross-country, and that helps her with endurance, but she is in the pool whenever she can be,” Francone said. “She always comes to the first meet ready to go and post great times. She gets really excited and anxious and swims some of her best times under pressure.”

With the 100-yard butterfly being her favorite event, Leonard said she was surprised to post the times she did in the 200-yard individual medley and the 50-yard freestyle.

Still, the junior said she is going to have to continue to work hard in practice if she wants to keep improving.

“I know when I get on the blocks, I need to be mentally ready and not freak out,” she said. “I tend to overstress myself and that causes me to not do what I want to do. I’m going to keep working hard to be ready each race.”

Leonard wasn’t the only Bulldog swimmer to start the season off on the right foot.

Along with the Glenwood Springs meet, MCHS also competed Saturday at Aspen High School.

The 200-yard freestyle relay placed in the top three at both meets, adding a first-place finish at Aspen on top of their second-place finish in Glenwood.

Micah Espinosa took third place in the 100-yard freestyle in both meets, while Adrienne Wix, Hannah Kirk, Riley Johnston and Laurel Tegtman each brought home a top-3 finish in Glenwood.

Coach Anita Reynolds said it was great to have such a big team to compete with in the first two meets.

“All the girls were excited and for some, it was the first time they were in a yard pool because we swim in a meter pool,” she said. “They couldn’t wait to get in the pool and get some times in and compete.”

Still, after the first meet, Reynolds and Francone said they want to see better endurance in future meets.

“We are going to do some dry-land training to help build up their muscles so they have the strength to pull themselves through the water,” Reynolds said. “If we can build up that capacity, they will be able to post even faster times.”

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