Not Kidd-ing around

GJ swimmer has good shot to place at Class 5A state meet

Grand Junction High School’s Taylor Kidd will swim in four events at this weekend’s Class 5A State Swimming Championships in Thornton. The junior is in two individual events — the 200-and 500-yard freestyle — and will swim on two of the Tigers’ relay teams — the 200 medley and the 200 freestyle or the 400 freestyle.

Fruita Monument’s Kathryn McConnell is the only Wildcat to qualify in an individual event, making the cut in the 100-yard backstroke for the Class 5A State Swimming Championships.

Junior Taylor Kidd is poised to lead the Grand Junction High School girls swim team Friday at the Class 5A Swimming State Championships in Thornton.

If the list of qualifiers is any indication, Kidd could be swimming in the finals and potentially score points for the Tigers. Kidd swam the 10th fastest 200-yard freestyle in 5A with a time of 1 minute, 55.43 seconds, and if she finishes among the top eight spots in preliminaries, she’ll have a shot at a state title. 
Less than one second separates the seventh- through 10th-place finishers, and Tigers coach Janet Ryan said she can see Kidd challenge for a high finish and even a podium spot.
She also said Kidd will be chasing the 200 freestyle school record, set by Shauna Gilmore in 1981 when she swam it in 1:53:30.

“She’s up there (in seeding),” Ryan said. “She’ll have to swim a good race, and we’ll have to get her healthy. It’s nothing serious, but we’ve had a bunch of girls get sick, and it was her turn.

“It’s her taper week this week, and we’ve done things a little differently this year, so we’ll see how that works out.”

This is the third straight year Kidd — who also qualified for state in the 500 freestyle this year — has gone to the State Championships. She’s also a member of two of the three relay teams the Tigers will send to Thornton. Kidd is currently listed in three of the relays, but will only be able to compete in two. Taylor Wood, Emily Pitcher or Brenna Stevens will replace her on the relay she doesn’t swim.

In the 200 medley relay, Kianna Colaizzi, Taylor Kochevar, Kidd and Marina Silva will compete. The 200 freestyle relay is made up of Kochevar, Kidd, Silva and Trinity Simmons. The 400 freestyle relay’s swimmers are Kochevar, Silva, Kidd and Avery Pope.

Silva is the other individual qualifier for Grand Junction. She qualified in the middle of a 62-swimmer field for the 50 freestyle with a time of 25.48 seconds.

“For Marina it will be tough because it’s a fast race,” Ryan said. “She can do it, but she’ll have to put together the perfect race because it’s start, turn and finish.”

Fruita Monument’s Kathryn McConnell was the Wildcats’ lone individual qualifier. The sophomore qualified in the 100 backstroke with a time of 1:03.59. Coach Jessica Haley said she was thrilled that McConnell qualified.

“It’s very exciting because she beat the state cut by over a second, so that’s pretty good for her,” Haley said. “I’m really excited because I know she’s going to do great.”

McConnell will swim the butterfly leg of the Wildcats’ 200 medley relay team that dropped six seconds in one weekend to make the state cut. Michaela Hoffman, Kailey Shabelski, Ashley Hoefer and McConnell qualified with a time of 2:00.77, less than half a second from the school record of 2:00.3 set in 2006. Haley said their main goal at the state meet will be breaking the school record.

Class 4A State Swimming

After a 12th-place finish at state a year ago by a senior-laden team, Montrose is in somewhat of a rebuilding season by its own lofty standards. The Indians qualified four swimmers and two relay teams for the 4A state meet, which is Friday and Saturday in Fort Collins.

Freshman Allison Fields qualified in the 200 freestyle as well as the 500 freestyle. Senior Allison Foulk, junior Callie Storter and sophomore Hope Morris each qualified in the 100 breaststroke. The Indians will send teams in the 200 medley and 200 freestyle relays.

Fields has the Indians’ highest seed going into the state meet: 17th in the 500 freestyle.

Delta’s lone qualifier was Lydia Knutson, who qualified for the 50 freestyle in 26.59, only .01 under the qualifying mark.


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