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Newcomers boost Niwot at St. Vrain All District Meet

Series: Niwot Girls Swim and Dive | Story 3

January 22, 2020

Jocelyn Rowley

Freshman Steph Mow dives off the block for (green cap) at the start of the 100-yard freestyle at the SVVSD All District Meet on Jan. 18.

The annual St. Vrain All-District meet marks the midway point of the girls swim season, and after an energetic performance by her top swimmers at this year's event, Niwot head coach Sarah Stamp is renewing her hopes for another top finish at the upcoming Class 4A state championships.

"We've been building steadily every week," she said after the friendly but competitive meet, held Jan. 18 at Mountain View Aquatic Center. "Today, there were lots of time drops, and best times across the board. By no means was it an easy week, so it's an exciting thing to have some really great swims today and not be anywhere near taper time."

Formerly known as the "All-City" meet, the event comprises teams from Longmont, Niwot, Silver Creek, Skyline, and-as of 2019-Erie. Niwot swimmers took first or second place in nine of the meet's 12 races, ending the day in second place with 540 team points. For the sixth straight year, Silver Creek took the crown, with 699 team points, while Erie, led by former Niwot swimmer Payten Irwin, was third (426).

The "great swims" came early and often for the youthful Cougars, starting with sophomore Mary Codevilla's domination of the 200-yard freestyle, where she bested the runner-up by 12 seconds. The All-American then went on to take first in the 100 backstroke with a season-best time of 1 minute, 0.27 seconds, and anchored the winning 400 freestyle relay for the Cougars (3:46.94) in the day's final event.

Third-year veteran Emiley Yie picked up a first place medal for Niwot in the 200 individual medley (2:12.34), then later powered the Cougars to a commanding lead in the 400 freestyle relay. As the team's most "versatile" swimmer according to Stamp, the junior also took second in the 500-yard freestyle (5:23.70), and swam the freestyle leg on the 2nd-place 200 medley relay team (1:54.13).

Niwot also saw top swims on the day from juniors Sophia Gaspar, who was third in the 200IM and sixth in the 100 butterfly, and Lucca Fulkerson, who posted top-10 finishes in the butterfly and backstroke.

Meanwhile, a pair of freshmen-Steph Mow and Lexy Bullen-also put up points for Niwot on the day, another development Stamp deemed"exciting." Mow finished second overall in the 100-yard freestyle, with a season-best time of 56.67, and third in the 100-yard backstroke with another season-best (1:04.04). Bullen was second overall in the 100-yard breaststroke with a state qualifying time of 1:12.00, and fifth overall in the 50-yard freestyle (26.79). Both also swam on Niwot's winning 400 freestyle relay.

"She just transferred to Niwot, so this was her first meet with us," Stamp said of Bullen. "It was a nice jumping off point for her...and Steph has just been a great addition to the team. She's also a very sweet girl, so it's been nice to have her personality and times."

Jocelyn Rowley

But it was the performance of her divers that elicited the most enthusiasm from Stamp following the meet. For the first time in several years, the Cougars fielded three competitors in the event-junior Hallie Ostrom and newcomers Lilia Moritz and Katy Carroll. "This was Katy's first 11-dive meet of the season, so it's not the easiest way to start off your career," Stamp said. "But she's been working really hard at practice since the beginning of the season to build and get 11 dives under her belt, and I'm so proud she was able to get that done."

With the All-District competition under their belts, Stamp said the team will now turn its attention to finishing strong down the stretch. With just two duals left in the regular season, the coach plans to do some fine-tuning ahead of the Northern conference meet on Feb. 8. She also hopes to bolster their complement of state qualifiers, which currently stands at seven.

"We need to dial some things in to win conference again," Stamp said. "We're continuing to figure out where to put girls, and we're solidifying what they're good at, and what are they are maybe not as good at."

Niwot closes out the regular season against Mountain View on Jan. 28.


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