LITTLETON | Neither Grandview nor Cherokee Trail had an individual champion, but the Wolves and Cougars showed plenty of depth Saturday as they finished third and fourth, respectively, at the Centennial “A” League Championship meet.
Cherry Creek won eight of the 12 events on its way to 951 points to capture the championship from the super-fast meet and host Arapahoe finished second (890), while Grandview earned a 100-point gap over Cherokee Trail — which had just won the league dual meet between the teams — to round out the top half of the standings.
Smoky Hill and Eaglecrest finished back-to-back as well in fifth and sixth place, while Overland came in eighth place with only divers entered in the meet.
Coach Kevin Chatham’s Cherokee Trail team came closest among local teams to an event champion with three second-place finishes, with two of them coming from senior Skylar Brgoch, who was the runner-up in both the 200 yard freestyle and 100 yard butterfly.
Brgoch recorded the top time in the butterfly in prelims, only to come in second in the final behind Cherry Creek’s Lawson Ficken, who missed the league record Brgoch set last year (55.93 seconds) by just 0.01. Brgoch was second-fastest in the 200 freestyle prelims and maintained that spot behind Arapahoe’s Lindsey Louder.
Sophomore Sarah Woren also earned an individual runner-up finish for the Cougars in the 100 yard freestyle, while she was also fourth in the 50, and Cherokee Trail capped the meet with a second place finish in the 400 yard freestyle relay courtesy of the team of Brgoch, Woren and juniors Mckenna Mazeski and Morgan Walker.
Grandview got a runner-up finish from junior Kya Guikema in the 500 yard freestyle as she came in second to Cherry Creek’s Katie Cohen — daughter of former Smoky Hill girls swim coach Scott Cohen — who dropped nearly 10 seconds from the prelims. Guikema herself swam three seconds faster in finals than in prelims.
Coach Karen Ammon’s Wolves also got individual third-place results from junior Paige Dailey in the 100 breaststroke and senior diver Madeline Hemstreet, while both the 200 yard medley relay (Dailey, senior Skylar Nollenberger, sophomore Peyton Belcher and freshman Ava Zadigan) and 400 yard freestyle relay (Guikema, Zadigan, junior Becky Hildebrand and sophomore Keira Vail) each finish in the third spot as well.
Senior Annelise Thomas had a big final Centennial “A” League performance for coach Susan Stone’s Smoky Hill team, as she finished in the top three in both of her individual events.
Thomas already owned the school record in the 100 butterfly and she topped herself with a league finals time of 57.16 that put her third behind Ficken and Brgoch. She followed that up by improving nearly two seconds from her prelims time in the 100 backstroke as she touched the wall in 58.21 seconds to come in only behind Louder (56.93).
All three of Smoky Hill’s relay teams posted top-five finishes as well, with Thomas swimming with junior Anna Ambruso, sophomore Virginia Berglund and freshman Morgan Goodrich on the 400 freestyle relay that posted the highest finish in fourth.
Sixth-place Eaglecrest punched its ticket to the Class 5A state swim meet in both the 200 yard medley and 200 yard freestyle relays, which each eclipsed the qualifying standard in both the prelims and finals.
The finals in both events had the same lineup as senior Hadley Phipps, junior Nalani Fierro, sophomore Lauren Menefee and freshman Lin Naraoka, which finished in sixth place in the 200 freestyle relay and seventh in the 200 medley relay.
Overland’s points came from the diving duo of sophomore Maya Richman and junior Lucy Porter.
The Centennial League’s best head to the Veterans’ Memorial Aquatic Center Feb. 15-16 for the 5A girls state swim meet.
Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports
2022 CENTENNIAL “A” LEAGUE GIRLS SWIM CHAMPIONSHIPS
Feb. 5 at Arapahoe High School
Team scores: 1. Cherry Creek 951 points; 2. Arapahoe 890; 3. GRANDVIEW 750; 4. CHEROKEE TRAIL 649; 5. SMOKY HILL 407; 6. EAGLECREST 287; 7. Mullen 251; 8. OVERLAND 24
200 yard medley relay — 1. Cherry Creek, 1 minute, 45.31 seconds; 200 yard freestyle — 1. Lindsey Louder (Arapahoe), 1 minute, 54.20 seconds; 200 yard individual medley — 1. Teagan Steinmetz (Cherry Creek), 2 minutes, 6 seconds; 50 yard freestyle — 1. Ella Turken (Cherry Creek), 24.24 seconds; 1-meter diving — 1. Erin Gleason (Arapahoe), 423.45 points; 100 yard butterfly — 1. Lawson Ficken (Cherry Creek), 55.94 seconds; 100 yard freestyle — 1. Ella Turken (Cherry Creek), 53.18 seconds; 500 yard freestyle — 1. Katie Cohen (Cherry Creek), 5 minutes, 13.61 seconds; 200 yard freestyle relay — 1. Cherry Creek (Charlotte Wilson, Lawson Ficken, Joy Graziano, Elizabeth Brock), 1 minute, 37.10 seconds (pool record, previous 1:38.05 by Arapahoe in 2015; 100 yard backstroke — 1. Lindsey Louder (Arapahoe), 56.93 seconds; 100 yard breaststroke — 1. Ryan Johnston (Arapahoe), 1 minute, 3.46 seconds (pool record, previous 1:03.57 by Zoe Bartel in 2018); 400 yard freestyle — 1. Cherry Creek (Charlotte Wilson, Lawson Ficken, Joy Graziano, Alana Maxey), 3 minutes, 31.51 seconds
— Full Centennial “A” League Championship results, here