Fast, fast times in Texas for Aspen Speedos | AspenTimes.com

Fast, fast times in Texas for Aspen Speedos

Dale Strode
The Aspen Times

The Aspen Speedos tested different waters last weekend.

The elite, older swimmers headed to Texas for a huge multistate senior meet.

The younger swimmers headed to Denver for the top midseason club meet of the season.

Both events left head coach Gordon Gerson pleased with the Speedos progress thus far.

"I have pretty high expectations for these guys. But I would have to say it went better than my expectations," Gerson said of the 700-swimmer meet at Texas A&M that included many of the nation's top swim clubs (Scottsdale Aquatics, Palo Alto/Stanford Aquatics, Swim Fort Lauderdale).

"In general, we were more healthy that we have been for a big meet," he said, adding that a change in training regimen helped produce faster times at sea level in College Station, Texas.

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"We came in 22nd as a team," Gerson said of his Texas squad that featured Max Bryant, Kelcie Gerson, Kelli Callahan, Charlton Mechling and Kennidy Quist.

"Max had the 15th-highest point total for boys at the meet (no age groups; all senior swimmers)," Gerson said. "Max had a lifetime best in … nearly every event."

Bryant, 17, was fifth in the 400 individual medley and sixth in the 200 butterfly.

Those races featured fields of 150-plus swimmers.

"His surprising swim of the meet was the 100 free," Gerson. "He swam 47.59 … that was a 1.8-second time drop from his previous best."

Bryatnt also finished 10th in the 200 IM at the Gulf Coast meet.

"Kennidy Quist had a great meet," the Aspen coach said of the 14-year-old swimmer.

Swimming against older swimmers, Quist was 28th in the 100 breast and 31st in the 50 free.

"In the 100 free, she got a lifetime best," he said. Quist was 27th out of 200-plus swimmers.

Quist teamed with Kelcie Gerson, Kelli Callahan and Charlton Mechling on the Aspen relay team that came in 17th in the 400 freestyle relay (in a team-record time).

The girls finished even better —13th — in the 800 free relay ( a team record by 30-plus seconds).

"They were tired on the last day. But they were still 21st in the 400 medley," Gerson said.

"Kelli, who's been sick, still had an outstanding meet. She came in 25th in the 100 breast … 25th in the 200 IM," the Aspen coach said.

Mechling started the meet with a dazzling time in the 100 breast, setting the tone for the meet.

She was 15th in that event.

She was 19th in the 100 freestyle out of 300 swimmers.

"Kelcie had all season bests," said Gordon Gerson, her father and coach. "Her best individual finish was the 200 back."

Plus, he said, the results came against elite competition in Texas.

In Denver, at the midseason point of the club season, the Speedos competed in the CSI Pioneer Open.

Eleven-year-old Madelyn Mechling led the way. She was eighth in the 50 back. She also finished 16th in the 200 freestyle.

"She was top-30 in all of her events but one," Gerson said.

"Save (Saverio Multin) really had a great meet. He dropped … big time chunks," Gerson said of the 13-year-old's best finishes.

Likewise, Gerson said, Cole Petersen had a strong meet in Denver.

"He had best times in everything (but two events)," Gerson said.

Everett Olson, Micah Sanders-Silva and Andrew Sprenger also swam for the Speedos.

"This is the first time for Micah at a meet like this. He just turned 9," Gerson said. "Andrew … same thing. He just turned 9. He had a nice meet."

Gerson said the Aspen Speedos will have a break until mid-January when they resume the club season at Grand Junction.

dstrode@aspentimes.com

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