It’s been a theme in the early season. Coaches Matt Dangleis and Alex Leuchars, in an effort to increase stamina, push their swimmers hard at practice, expecting them to be too exhausted to perform at their peak in the weekend meets; yet, the swimmers have continued to rise above expectations. This week was no different.
“[The meet] went really well, actually kind of shocked me a little. A lot of my swimmers were exhausted and tired,” said Leuchars. “We’ve been pounding them hard.”
A team of 33 tired swimmers came out of the Malta meet on Saturday with a second-place finish, behind only Chinook, who took fourth in the state last season and ahead of Lewistown, who took third in the state last season. Dalton Sand and Khloe Krumwiede, veteran swimmers, led the way for Glasgow, both scoring high points in their class with three first-place finishes.
In the boys’ 8 and under class, Sand was first in the 100-meter Individual Medley (IM), the 50 free and the 25 fly. Krumwiede took the top spot in the 200 IM, 50 free and 100 free for the girls’ 13-14 class.
Joining Krumwiede and Sand at the top of the standings were some new swimmers, such as Colter Barnett, who was first in the boys’ 8 and under 25 backstroke. Barnett also finished fourth in the 25 free.
“He rocked it,” said Dangleis. “His first year swimming, he did great.”
Also rocking it into first-place finishes were Nicole and Nathanael Lippert, Katie Kaiser, Rachael Zeiger and a few team relays.
The Lipperts both took first in the same event, the 50 breast, Nicole in the girls’ 9-10 and Nathanael in the boys’ 11-12. Nicole was also first in the 100 IM and second in the 50 fly and Nathanael also grabbed a bronze in the 100 free.
Kaiser finished with a top-three trifecta, placing first, second and third in three events. She was first in the 50 back, second in the 50 free and third in the 50 fly for the girls’ 9-10 class.
Zeiger took first in a pair of events in the girls’ 15-19 class, placing in the top spot in the 50 fly and the 100 fly.
The girls’ 13-14 relay teams brought home both golds Glasgow would win in the relay events, taking first in the 200 free and the 200 medley. The girls’ 11-12 relay teams were right behind with a second in both the 200 free and the 200 medley. The girls’ 8 and under 100 free was second and the girls’ 15-19 was third in the 200 medley.
Rounding out the top-three placers in Malta were Logan Gunderson, in the boys’ 13-14 class, Tim Wageman, boys’ 11-12, DJ Rasmusan, girls’ 13-14, Merrick Eliason, boys’ 11-2, and Josie Braaten, girls’ 15-19.
Gunderson was second in the 100 free and third in the 50 free. Wageman took second in the 50 back. Rasmusan finished third in the 100 back. And Eliason was third in the 50 fly while Braaten was second in the 400 free.
What made the results so impressive was how hard the swimmers have been training during the week, according to Dangleis, and how tired they were heading into the meet.
“They were swimming really tired and destroyed and they just weren’t there but we still actually took second,” he said. “It was a great meet just to show good technique and kind of start sprinting and racing now.”
The focus early in the season, according to Dangleis, is not necessarily winning meets, it’s improving technique, endurance and ability.
“All these other meets, they’re a big deal but not as big as divisionals and state so we want to be in shape and we only have a two month season, so (our goal is) to get them into shape and get them ready to go by then,” he said. “I don’t think they’re going to drop as much time from their best times from last year until we start resting them and tapering them.”
At that point, he says, the swimmers should see a five- to six-second drop in time in their events, enough to vault them into the standings at state, especially if Glasgow can start showcasing their full team.
“Once we get our team full force, we can really unleash what Glasgow has in it,” said Dangleis, who hopes more swimmers can join the team who swam so well in Malta.
Such as, Klaire Krumwiede, Emily Fink, Noah Lippert, Iris McKean, Jordan Kulczyk, Andrea Hansen, Serena Fink, Mykenzie Eliason, Natosha Sand, Aleah Goeke, Cara Goeke, Tori Pehlke, Harley Eliason, Devin Fromdahl, Bridger Barnett, Megan Rasmusan and the girls’ 9-10 100 medley relay, who all placed in the top ten of at least one event in Malta.
Also competing were Kambria Ross, Tarin Vandall, Kaylee Ross, Hannah Black and Rachel Billingsley.
Kiwanis now travels to Plentywood on Saturday, where they’ll be looking for the same results despite another rigorous week in training.
“This week, we’re really going to pounding on starting to get into spring gear, starting to get into more training,” said Dangleis. “We’re trying to teach our kids not to breath off the turns or anything like that and they can hold their breath. Breathing six times in a 50 is not what we want. It’s a 50, you’ve got to get up and go, it’s a sprint.”