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KW men’s swim team prepares for state

Tori Bailey, Staff Writer

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The Kelly Walsh Men’s Swimming and Diving team is preparing for a 4th state title. On February 23rd and 24th, the boys plan to overthrow the top team in the state, Gillette.

Over the season, the boys had to climb mountains to topple over Laramie and be left right underneath Gillette. One of these mountains was new surroundings.

The team walked into practice this season in a renovated pool. “The blocks are the best part.” said juniors Kade Hillibush and Kahner Christopherson.

The team’s motto or theme for the season has been, “Compete”. “Compete means it doesn’t matter if we win or if we lose, as long as we competed and had fun and worked hard, that’s all that matters,” said senior Jon Brooks.

Recently, the boys won the annual Fishbowl against NC. “Winning the Fishbowl is always fun,” said Christopherson, “we tend not to focus on the final score and just mainly race as hard as we can.”

Another recent meet was the Gillette Invite. The Gillette Invite is a large meet that allows girls who are attached to a swim club to swim, or dive, at the meet as well. The team took 2nd place overall and began to prepare for conference taking place the following week.

Last weekend, February 10th and 11th, the boys competed at the 4A West Conference Meet in Rock Springs, Wyoming. Before heading to the meet Hillibush said, “I think everyone will go a lifetime best and it will be a fun meet. Kelly Walsh will take the win. A preview for state.” The final results ranked Kelly Walsh as the 2017 Conference Champions.

Starting last week the team went on to taper. This is where the athletes focus less on the vigorous exercise and more on strengthening of mental stamina to help prepare for their “big race.” “Taper really helps big guys like me,” said Christopherson.

The team is hoping to take home their 4th state title by winning all 3 of the relays at state. Relays are scored as double points compared to regular events. “If we swim lights out, we’re gonna win,” said Brooks.

“This team is a state team, we are on the rise and we just keep getting better and better. There’s no pressure on us. That’s all on Gillette. I am confident in our relays especially because we could have a shot at winning all of them and taking the meet,” said Hillibush. Junior Christopherson is the anchor, the last person of the 200 medley relay and the 200 free relay.

The team is planning an uprising; a plan to end Gillette’s tight grip on swimming within Wyoming. It’s lights out.

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KW men’s swim team prepares for state