Cheyenne Mountain captures seven event victories to dominate at own swim meet

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For the host team, the Cheyenne Mountain Swimming and Diving Invitational is an opportunity to see where it stands early in the season.

The result: The Indians don’t have much to worry about.

Cheyenne Mountain ruled Saturday’s meet, scoring 509 points to run away with the team title.

Mountain Vista finished with 413 to take second as Highlands Ranch (302), Pine Creek (247) and Air Academy (222) rounded out the top five.

“All in all, this was a great day,” Indians coach Kate Doane said, beaming.

Junior Sophia Bricker (50-yard freestyle, 100 breaststroke) and senior Cat Wright (200 freestyle, 500 freestyle) led the Indians with two individual titles. Sophomore Clare Sanderson chipped in with her own win in the 100 backstroke after finishing in 1 minute, 1.29 seconds.

Wright, an Alabama swimming signee, had another record breaking day. She finished the 200 freestyle in 1:54.03, breaking the previous mark — set in 2016 by Pueblo South’s Lainee Jones — by .3 seconds. The Indians swept the top three in that event, thanks to Frances Hayward and Claire Fisher coming in second and third, respectively.

At the Class 4A state meet in February, Wright topped Olympian Missy Franklin’s 200-yard individual medley record, set in 2009, in 2:04.58.

“I guess it really wasn’t one of my goals,” Wright said, referring to Saturday’s meet record, “but it was really special to have it.”

She also dominated in the 500 freestyle, finishing in 5:14.52 — about four seconds ahead of runner-up and teammate Hayward. Elsewhere for Cheyenne Mountain, Bricker took first in the 50 free and 100 breaststroke in 25.25 and 1:04.79, respectively.

The Indians also excelled in the team races, capturing first in the 200 free and 400 free relays in 1:40.48 and 3:39.74, respectively. They took second in the 200 medley relay in 1:51.77 — behind Mountain Vista, which finished in 1:49.6.

“This meets shows us where we are, what we need to work on and who needs to train and who needs to back off before a big meet,” Doane said. “I love what I see. Honestly, our goal was to have a lot of fun this year.”

Last season, the Indians captured a state title, their first since 2002.

This year, they returned a good chunk of that team. So, it was nice for the Cheyenne Mountain coach and others to see those swimmers, along with some newcomers, in a big-meet setting before the winter break.

“I think it’s important to get into the spirit of swimming,” Wright said. “I think it’s a great first meet to see where we’re at and what we have to do by the end of the season to make it into the rankings at state.”

Other meet highlights include Manitou Springs’ Sydney Dolloff-Holt finishing second in the 200 medley; Pine Creek’s Avery Dinnel winning the diving event with 418.9 points; and Air Academy’s Paris Binard taking second in the 100 backstroke.