Strong performance for Aspen Speedos in Denver
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado
DENVER – Aspen Speedos head coach Gordon Gerson called it the meet’s most impressive performance.
Swimmer Max Bryant, now 15 and competing in the open division, matched strokes with a 23-year-old recent Southern Methodist University (Tex.) graduate for most of the 400 IM at this past weekend’s Colorado Swimming Incorporated Pioneer Open. Bryant wound up missing out on a victory by just one-tenth of a second.
“To lose by that much to a Division
I-caliber athlete is pretty awesome,” Gerson said Tuesday. “That gives you a good indication of where Max is right now.”
Bryant’s effort highlighted a strong weekend at Denver University for the Speedos, who wound up 19th overall and first among Western Slope squads.
Here are the weekend’s highlights:
• In addition to his second-place finish in the 400 IM, Bryant wound up fifth in the 200 butterfly, making a sectionals cut in the process. He also took eighth in both the 200 IM and 500 freestyle and 14th in both the 100 and 200 breaststroke.
• Sam Richie, Aspen’s leading point scorer, logged five top-10 finishes, among them a second in the 200 freestyle and a fifth in the 200 IM.
He scored points in seven of his eight events and recorded personal bests five times.
“He hasn’t been to nearly as many Front Range meets as some of the other kids; there usually would be nerves involved,” Gerson said of the 10-year-old Richie. “He stepped up and did outstanding. … It’s great to see Sam at a big meet and doing well at a big meet.”
• Kelcie Gerson, working her way back to 100 percent following a shoulder injury in the summer, finished fifth in the 200 backstroke, eighth in the 100 backstroke and 12th in the 500 freestyle.
“This is her first time back on the big stage since having had a break. This should’ve reassured her that she’s doing great,” coach Gerson said. “Those are excellent placements.”
• Kelli Callahan logged a pair of 10th-place finishes in the 50 and 100 freestyle and recorded personal bests in five of her seven events.
Callahan teamed with fellow 13-year-old Charlie Mechling, 15-year-old Kelcie Gerson and 16-year-old Claire Collier to finish fourth and secure a sectionals cut in the 200 medley relay. The winning team consisted of two 16-year-olds and two
• Mechling, who was under the weather, still managed to finish eighth in the 100 breaststroke and 16th in the 200 breaststroke.
Her sister, Maddie, wound up 10th in the 200 freestyle and 15th in the 100 freestyle.
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The 2020-21 Nordic combined season was supposed to be historic. This winter was going to be the first ever with women’s Nordic combined World Cup events, the first scheduled for Dec. 3-6 in Lillehammer, Norway.