Aspen Speedos dominate at Deep Freeze | AspenTimes.com

Aspen Speedos dominate at Deep Freeze

Dale Strode
The Aspen Times

The Aspen Speedos put the opposition in a deep freeze.

The Aspen junior swim team dominated the annual Sopris Deep Freeze Invitational in Glenwood Springs last weekend, collecting a meet-high 41 first-place finishes.

"We had 41 firsts. The next best was 19," Speedos head coach Gordon Gerson said. "We had 38 second places. The next best was 17."

Gerson said he was extremely pleased with the turnout of 51 Speedos for the Glenwood Springs meet, hosted by the Sopris club.

"I was thrilled with the turnout. I was thrilled with most everyone's performance. And I was thrilled with the behavior and the learning curve," Gerson said. "The kids were on top of it. For a change, injury and illness didn't come into the picture."

The Aspen Speedos were paced by the Mechling sisters.

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"They were 16 for 16 … eight wins each," Gerson said of Charlton Mechling (15) and Madelyn Mechling (11). Charlton competed in the girls 13-and-over division. Madelyn swam in the girls 11-12 division.

Madelyn won the 100 freestyle, 200 back, 50 back, 500 free, 50 free, 200 free, 100 individual medley and 100 back.

Charlton's sweep came in the 100 free, 200 IM, 200 back, 100 breast, 50 free, 20 breast, 200 free and 100 back.

A number of Speedos collected top-three finishes in the two-day swim meet held at the Glenwood Springs Community Center pool.

Claire Anderson, age 8, had a third place to lead her performance in her very first swim meet.

"Lillie (Boggs) had four firsts, three thirds and a second," Gerson said of the Aspen 8-year-old. "She had some very solid swimming in the 8-and-under catgory along with her buddy Gracey Brown."

Boggs won the 100 breast, the 50 free, the 25 butterfly and the 50 breast last weekend.

Brown had firsts in the 100 free, the 25 free and the 100 back.

"Kelli (Callahan) is working really, really hard," Gerson said of the Aspen 15-year-old. He said she's been swimming major distance.

"She managed to get out there and a get a win in the 100 fly, which is a hard race when you are fatigued," Gerson said.

He said Nathan Cherry continues to take his swimming to a new level.

"That's fun to see," he said of Cherry, who had a second in the 200 IM and four third places (100 free, 50 back, 50 free, and 200 breast). Cherry (11) competes in the 11-12 age division.

Gerson said Emily Driscoll (13) continued her outstanding distance swimming. She was second in the 1,000 freestyle in the tough 13-and-older division.

"Aubrey Elder has climbed up the standings. That's nice to see," Gerson said of the 8-year-old. He collected a third in the 50 fly in Glenwood Springs.

Returning from illness, Kelcie Gerson (17) had a pair of second places (200 back, 100 back).

"Coach Daddy was happy with her performance," Gerson said of his daughter.

Haver Muss-Nichols amassed six second-place finishes in the boys 8-and-under division for the Speedos.

"Haver's really stepped up. He had a whole bunch of seconds and thirds. He's doing really well," Gerson said.

Everett Olson (12) won three races — 500 free, 50 free, 100 fly.

"Everett's progressing very nicely," the Aspen Speedos head coach said.

Cole Petersen had three firsts and four seconds in the 11-12 division. He won the 100 free, the 100 breast and the 200 free.

"Cole's working hard," Gerson said. "It's fun for him to be out there winning some races."

Kennidy Quist, competing in her first meet as a healthy swimmer, had a number of strong swims, Gerson said.

"The results paid off nicely," he said after Quist (14) had six runner-up finishes and a third place. She competed in the 13-and-older division.

Sister Paige Quist (11) had a second and a third in the girls 11-12 division.

Gerson said the sisters are still adjusting to life at Aspen's elevation after growing up at sea level in Florida. They moved to Aspen in August.

"Micah (Sanders-Silva) also is going great," Gerson said. "He was just one second place away from a first-place sweep (eight events)."

Sanders-Silva (8) won the 100 free, the 25 free, the 50 back, the 25 fly, the 50 breast, the 25 breast and the 25 back. And he was second in the 50 fly.

Gerson said Meghann Smiddy had a strong meet. She swam only one day but had a pair of seconds and a third.

"She's a hard worker at practice," Gerson said.

Andrew Sprenger (8) won four events for the Speedos — 50 fly, 100 breast, 50 free and 100 IM.

Six-year-old Eddie Zane, competing in the 8-and-under division, added a third place in the 100 back — swimming against older swimmers.

"Eli Cohen … after just joining the team a week ago, went out and had a second and two thirds," Gerson said.

Cohen (7) swam in the 8-and-under division.

"We had a bunch of kids who hadn't been in a meet before, and they did really well."

The younger Aspen Speedos will head to the Colorado Open in Denver in two weeks. Qualifying standards had to be met by the Speedos who will race in Denver.

The older Speedos will head to the Gulf Coast Championships at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. The Speedos had to meet qualifying times to reach the multistate Gulf Coast event on Dec. 6-8.

dstrode@aspentimes.com