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West Valley swimmers race to state finals

Thursday, January 17, 20131347 views

The high school swim season is entering into its final stretch. Swimmers from local high schools are trying to cut down their times in preparation for the region finals and state swim meets.

Competitive swimming at the high school level is a long and grueling season. Many teams practice up to six days a week beginning Oct 22. This year the season last until the state meet Feb. 8-9 at the BYU swimming pool.

“We are always trying to improve our team. We have high hopes that our high school teams and club teams will send someone to the Olympic trials some day,” Shawn Marsing, Hunter’s head swim coach said.

Wolverines Brayden Corbridge and Taylor Clement have posted the boys teams fastest times. The girls team is led by Claire Jackson, Mikayla Bambrick and Shaelynn Simonson.

Hunter has 20 girls and 22 boys on the team this year. Cyprus has similar numbers of student athletes on its team.

Cyprus’ Haley Warner and Amanda Ard, along with boys leaders, Jeff Johnson, Ben Hurst and Isaac Socha, have posted the team’s fastest times.

With the construction of Granger High School, the swim team has suffered. Last season the team did not have any girls, but this year, the number of students has jumped in both girls and boys.

“We have struggled this year with numbers. I expect a much bigger team next year when we get a pool back,” Jeremy Newman, Granger’s head swim coach said.

“We are just at a slight disadvantage. These kids are trying to make the best of a difficult situation,” he said.

The Granger team has seven boys and seven girls. Sophomore Gorety Ramirez-Lopez holds the team’s fastest 50-meter freestyle time at 39.96. The boys team is led by sprinter Alex Castro at 28.71 in the 50- free.

The top two swimmers in each individual event at the region meet will automatically qualify for the state meet. The remaining qualifiers will be based on the best times from qualifying events to a total of 24 swimmers per individual event. Each swimmer can only compete in two individual events.

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