Maverick Aquatics sees results from hard work

W.S. meet gives young swimmers experience

Kirsten Hessler of Maverick Aquatics swims the butterfly leg of the 400-meter medley relay Sunday during the final day of the Western Slope Championships at El Pomar Natatorium.

Tyler Sweet of Maverick Aquatics swims the 13-Over 200-meter breaststroke at the Western Slope Championships on Sunday at El Pomar Natatorium.

Practice makes perfect.

The motto is preached in every sport, but for the Maverick Aquatics swimmers, its importance is becoming clearer by the day.

As they gear up for bigger state meets, the swimmers don’t discount the value of local meets, like the Western Slope Championships at El Pomar Natatorium, which wrapped up Sunday.

The only way to get better is to spend as much time in the pool as possible, said Maverick Aquatics coach Ed Stehlin, and he is pleased to see his swimmers, particularly those in the 12-and-under division, taking that to heart.

Stehlin said a shorter summer has kept many of his older swimmers away from the pool, because they want to spend as much time with their families and friends as possible before heading back to school.

Stehlin said that’s hurt Maverick Aquatics as a team, but on an individual level the swimmers are thriving.

“We’ve had a lot of personal bests and some Junior Olympic cuts, so it has been a good meet so far,” he said. “I’ve been very impressed with Delaney Kidd. She has made three (state) cuts already and dropped tons of time. She is having a really good meet.”

Kidd, 12, is preparing for a state meet in Fort Collins this week, along with 10-year-old Sarah Gaumer and 15-year-old Tyler Sweet. The meet will be Kidd and Gaumer’s first experience at the state level, but Stehlin said they are well-prepared to compete with swimmers on the Front Range.

“We train the same as they do,” he said. “We put in about as many hours. You just have to swim and work on technique and strokes. It’s kind of hard because we don’t have the gene pool that they do to chose from, just not as many bodies, but we do what we can with what we have here.”

The Maverick Aquatics swimmers have put in the time to be successful, and racing at the Western Slope Championships gives them the necessary competition.

“The racing gets them ready,” Stehlin said. “Just the opportunity to swim fast and swim against good competition and get race-ready. That is what this meet is all about.”


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