Leonard twice qualifies for state meet in MCHS swim team victory
MCHS girls swimming results from Moffat County Invitational:
(Swimmer, time, place)
200-meter medley relay
Moffat County A, 2:20.83, 1
Moffat County B, 2:53.61, 3
Marlee Chacon, 3:10.32, 2
Danielle Knez, 3:44.69, 3
200-meter individual medley
Eryn Leonard, 2:40.08, 1
Amy Brodie, 2:53.15, 3
Mary Penner, 32.79, 1
Riley Johnston, 43.67, 3
Tiarra Schroeder, 46.18, 4
Regina Acosta, 59.37, 5
Larissa Grammar, 169.00, 1
Eryn Leonard, 1:09.93, 1
Mary Penner, 1:14.50, 2
Danielle Knez, 1:31.31, 3
Jessica Prather, 1:34.07, 5
Krysta McClellan, 1:45.27, 6
Amy Brodie, 5:37.37, 1
200-meter freestyle relay
Moffat County, 3:15.26, 2
Luci Franklin, 1:18.85, 2
Jessica Prather, 2:05.68, 3
Krysta McClellan, 2:07.55, 4
Marlee Chacon, 1:43.27, 3
Luci Franklin, 1:52.50, 4
Riley Johnston, 2:18.01, 5
400-meter freestyle relay
Moffat County, 4:44.16, 1
Early in the swimming season, Moffat County High School sophomore Eryn Leonard knows she can do better.
Better will, in fact, entail improving on a state qualifying time.
Leonard qualified in 200-meter individual medley and the 100-meter butterfly in leading MCHS to a victory at the Moffat County Invitational Friday night at MCHS.
“It is great that I was able to qualify for state this early in the season,” Leonard said. “I am happy I can do this good and know I can still improve so much.”
Leonard’s time in the 200-metre IM, two minutes, 40.08 seconds, beat the 4A girls state qualifying time by almost two seconds. Her time in the 100-meter butterfly, one minute, 9.93 seconds, beat the qualifying time by almost four seconds.
By putting the time and hard work into practice, Leonard said she was able to push herself during the tough stretches of the race.
“I put in effort at every single practice,” she said. “When it started hurting, I told myself I was going to qualify for state and pushed that much harder.”
The Moffat County Invitational, which was suppose to be a three-team event, was knocked down to just Aspen High School and MCHS after Delta High School dropped out.
MCHS took 139 points to win the event over Aspen, who took 100 points.
Before the results were tallied, coach Meghan Francone knew it would be close because of many unknown factors that played into the meet.
“We only had one diver compared to (Aspen’s) two,” she said. “Injuries and sickness also slowed us down.”
Steamboat Springs junior Amy Brodie, who qualified for the state meet earlier in the season, had been sick all week, Francone said, and was unable to keep food down.
MCHS sophomore Hannah Kirk had an injured shoulder, which didn’t allow her to finish her event.
“We had a lot of unknown factors happen that we didn’t expect,” Francone said. “But, Brodie was able to swim, and when she is healthy, she is really close to qualifying for state again.”
Brodie won the 400-meter freestyle and swam in the 400-meter freestyle relay and the 200-meter medley relay, both of which won.
Coach Anita Reynolds said she was proud of the girls on bringing down their times.
“A lot of girls tonight were able to improve on their times,” she said. “It was a good meet for the team.”
During the winter break, Francone said she worked on changing the top of each stroke for the girls that they weren’t utilizing properly.
“Each girl has their own thing they need to polish and work on,” she said. “We inserted some changes today, but there are still some areas we can work on.”
One of the areas to work on, Francone said, was not falling into old habits.
“When the girls get tired, they fall back into their old habits,” she said. “They are comfortable with their old habits and we need to drill in the new ones.”
Reynolds hopes to work on the girls’ turns and starts.
“Certain areas of a race can make or break it,” she said. “If they can get those down, they will improve even more.”
Still, Francone said the team is young, and she feels the next couple of years, she will be able to create good things with them.
“There is a lot of upside to the young team,” she said. “I wouldn’t be able to do it with out Anita and the girls.”
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