Aspen Speedos sweep home swim meet
The Aspen Times
The Aspen Speedos know when the spotlight is on.
The local youth swim team dazzled under the bright lights of their own invitational swim meet last weekend at the Aspen Recreation Center pool.
The Speedos dominated in meet scoring, finishing well ahead of second-place Montrose in the annual Aspen Yellow Leaf Invitational.
Aspen totaled 633 points to 406 for Montrose.
Eleven teams participated in the two-day event.
“It was a good meet. All the best Western Slope swimmers were at this meet,” said Aspen head coach Gordon Gerson. “We had 231 kids in the meet, which is the biggest meet we’ve ever had here.”
He said he was pleased that 54 swimmers represented the Aspen Speedos at the home meet.
“We had a lot of nice results … nice results from our new swimmers,” he said, adding that several of the older Aspen Speedos have been battling illness.
“The meet started off .. with Olympic medalist Ed Moses,” Gerson said. Moses, who won a gold medal and a silver medal at the 2000 Olympic Games in Australia, gave a clinic to the Aspen Speedos on Friday.
“He gave a clinic for the visiting swimmers on Saturday,” Gerson said. “And we had an exhibition (race) between him and Max (Bryant) and Lars (Knutson), of Montrose.”
With the young swimmers fixing their focus on Moses, the former world record-holder sliced through the water at the ARC pool.
“Ed told us he hadn’t worked out in a year, but he still managed to break the pool record by 3 seconds,” Gerson said. “He went 56.14 for the 100 breaststroke.”
Moses, who won a silver medal in the 100 breast at Sydney in 2000, won a gold medal as part of the U.S. 4×100 medley relay team.
“To throw down a time like that was something,” Gerson said.
Moses, by the way, pulled Knutson along to his fastest time ever in the exhibition race.
Then, the younger swimmers hit the pool.
“The kids had a very good meet,” Gerson said, adding that a number of Aspen swimmers won events Saturday and Sunday.
“Charley Mechling … she swam nine events and won all of them in dominating fasthion,” Gerson said. “She set a bunch of pool records.”
Mechling, swimming in the 15-and-over girls division, won the 50 freestyle, the 100 back, the 100 fly, the 200 individual medley, the 400 individual medley, the 100 free, the 200 back, the 100 breast and the 200 free. She is 15 and competing against her age and older swimmers.
“Max, of course, had a real good meet,” Gerson said of 17-year-old Max Bryant, who won six of his eight races last weekend.
“Maddie Mechling won a whole bunch of events (eight of nine),” Gerson said. “She pretty much dominated the 11-and-12 age group … and she’s 11,” Gerson said, emphasizing her performances against girls a year older.
“Sevi Multin…. he won 1-2-3-4-5-6 of his eight events,” Gerson said. “He got second in the other two. He’s a 13-year-old in the 13-14 age group. I expect him to get better and better.”
Gerson said Lillie Boggs set her first individual team record in the 8-and-under girls. Boggs won the 25 butterfly and the 25 breast.
Gracey Brown, a 7-year-old swimming in the 8-and-under division, won four events at the Aspen meet.
Elle Eggeston, another 7-year-old, won a race in her first meet. She won the 8-and-under 50 back.
Aspen’s Everett Olson, in the 11-12 division, won three events and added two second-place finishes.
He won the 100 fly, the 500 free and the 200 free.
“Everett’s been working really hard,” Gerson said. “He’s shown the ability to dig down deep and bring it on certain occasions.”
Cole Petersen, 12, won four events for the Aspen Speedos.
“Cole has become a new kind of swimmer in the last couple of months,” Gerson said. “He’s working really hard in practice.”
Peterson won the 100 IM, 200 IM, 400 IM and 100 breast.
“Micah Sanders-Silva, 8, he continues to be a force in that age group,” Gerson said. He won two events.
Andrew Spenger, 8, added a win in the 50 back for the Speedos.
Gerson said Kenidy Quist, a transfer swimmer from Florida, won the 50 freestyle for girls 13-14.
“I was happy with the performances,” Gerson said.
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Mikaela Shiffrin’s tentative plans on Father’s Day: Dinner with family. Perhaps a board game or a movie. Definitely some Jimmy Buffet or Paul Simon music. Because that’s the sort of celebration her dad Jeff Shiffrin would’ve wanted.