Most folks don’t readily think of water when they hear Des Moines, Iowa. However, a few swimmers from Parker County made quite a splash there this past weekend.
Meanwhile, several members from that same Weatherford Swim Team brought home medals from the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation Swim Meet in Corpus Christi.
Competing in the State Games of America in Des Moines, Abbie Lane won three gold medals in the Women 19-99 category, taking first in the 50-yard butterfly with a time of 29.44 seconds, first in the 50-yard breast with a clocking of 35.81 and first in the 200-meter individual medley in 3:17.32. In addition, she captured a silver medal, placing second in the 50 freestyle, coming in at 27.85.
The short course consisted of yards and the long course was meters.
In the Boys 11-12 division, the 200-meter free relay of Cullen Costello, Max Gentry, Corbin Lane and Kody Burlison won gold, posting a 2:38.40.
The boys all swam long course (meters).
Individually, Costello was second in the 50 breast in 45.65, and eighth in both the 50 free and 100 free. Burlison was fourth in the 50 breast; Gentry placed sixth in the 50 fly, seventh in the 50 back and ninth in the 100 free; and Corbin Lane placed ninth in the 50 back, 10th in the 100 free and 11th in the 50 free.
Also, from the state meet, several swimmers qualified for national competition in California in 2024.
Leading the charge at state was 34-year-old Matt Williams, who took first place in both the 50-meter free and 100 individual medley, making him a national qualifier.
Brady D’Spain brought home the most medals. Swimming in the Boys 13-14 division, he was first in the 50 butterfly, second in the 100 IM and third in the 50 freestyle, also qualifying for nationals. He also qualified for state in a fourth event, finishing fourth on the 200 medley relay with Burlison, Zach Edwards and Michael Spillers.
The Boys 11-12 200 medley relay of Costello, Gentry, Carson Goff and Eli Vanzant placed third and qualified for nationals. The same quartet was fourth in the 200 freestyle relay.
Goff also placed sixth individually in the 50 back. Vanzant was sixth in the 100 free and seventh in the 50 free.
Others who placed in the top eight at state were:
“I’m really proud of our swimmers’ success this season. We’ve had to rebuild after COVID really impacted our season a few years ago,” said Tif Williams, co-coach of the team, along with her husband Matt. “These swimmers only get three or four practices a week for eight weeks, so it’s a fast and furious season. Looking at their times and progress over those eight weeks, you can see they are utilizing every opportunity to be in the water and to improve.
“Not only has that hard work gotten them to state but now to nationals, and for some it’s back to back nationals, which is huge. It’s been a while since we’ve sent anyone to nationals. This is the first time for all of these swimmers, so back-to-back is a big accomplishment. I hope that their success will encourage schools in the area to add swimming to their athletic programs.”
Also advancing to state for the WST this season were:
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