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By Quinn Robinson
The Courier 

Swim Team Finishes First In Glasgow Meet


Georgie Kulczyk / For The Courier

Members of the Glasgow Kiwanis Thunder pose for the camera after their first place finish this past weekend.

The Fourth of July weekend started off with a splash Saturday as the Glasgow Kiwanis Swim Team hosted the Glasgow Invitational swim meet.

The meet, which saw 11 total teams compete in the two-day event, came down to the wire as Glasgow narrowly came out of the meet with a first place finish. The Thunder edged second place team Lewistown by 16 points as the Sea Lions finished with 550 overall points.

"All of them did so well which is impressive especially when our younger swimmers haven't really grasped all of the different swim strokes yet," said Glasgow co-head coach Whitney Billing.

Billing along with fellow co-head coach Irene Whitmer said that it's hard to single out any particular swimmer because the coaches have been seeing vast improvements and contributions from their swimmers across the board.

The coaches said that the Barnett trio, consisting of Colter Bridger and Bode have improved significantly during the season.

Colter and Bridger each finished in the top five in all of their events with Colter accumulating two second-place finishes, while Bridger's highest finish was third in the 50-meter backstroke in the 11-12 age group.

Bode, the youngest Barnett at six-years-old, finished in ninth place in both of his events, the 50 freestyle and 25 backstroke.

Jordan Kulczyk, who recently returned from Australia with the MonDak Down Under basketball team, finished second in the 100 freestyle, third in the 50 freestyle and fourth in the 50 fly.

The Miller brothers, Ben and Bergen, continue to impress the coaches as Ben placed second in the 200 freestyle relay, third in the 50 freestyle, fourth in the 100 breaststroke and third in the 100 freestyle.

Younger brother Bergen followed suit by placing second in both the 100 free relay and the 100 medley relay, fourth in the 50 breaststroke, sixth in the 100 freestyle and seventh in the 50 freestyle.

"Bergen and Ben have the most graceful strokes I've seen," Billing said. "They're natural swimmers."

The event in which Billing and Whitmer feel allowed Glasgow the first place finish this weekend was the 100 fly in which Billing made the decision to put Taylor Johnson in the event.

"We pulled Taylor out of his freestyle event this weekend and put him in the 100 fly," Billing said. "He hated every second of it, but he placed second in the event."

With the second place finish, Glasgow was sitting atop the board with 566 team points, 16 points ahead of second place Lewistown who had 550.

Billing said that the decision to put Johnson in the event was easy with Johnson's six-foot wingspan and his graceful stroke in the pool.

"It's fantastic to see," said Glasgow co-head coach Irene Whitmer. "All of them had to be faster this weekend in order to get first place in the meet and our swimmers did that."

Glasgow has two more meets on their schedule before Divisionals in Conrad on July 26-27. First, the Thunder will travel to Glendive this weekend before heading to Lewistown on the 19-20.

After Divisionals at the end of the month, Glasgow will be hoping to send a good amount of their swimmers to the State Meet in Conrad on August 2-3. Billing said last year that the Thunder sent around 80-85 percent of their team to State.


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