AURORA | Missy Franklin looked at home in the Regis Jesuit swim bubble Tuesday afternoon.
Nothing had really changed since the last time Franklin was on the deck for a meet — other than the four gold medals and a bronze she won at the Summer Olympics in London — as the 17-year-old senior laughed, danced and cheered on her teammates during the Raiders’ 227.5-87.5 Continental League dual meet victory over Highlands Ranch.
In the first of two dual meets she plans to swim, Franklin won the 200-yard individual medley and 500-yard freestyle and qualified for the Class 5A girls state swim meet in both events, as well as the 50- and 100-freestyles with her times leading off the 200 and 400 freestyle races.
She did it all after a VIP night spent at the Justin Bieber concert, an early-morning practice with her club team and going through the first full day of classes at school after winter break.
“It’s so great to be back; I almost forgot how great it is to swim a dual meet with my Regis sisters,” said Franklin, who said she was shaking in the lockerroom prior to the meet. “It was so hard. I’m dead, but it was so much fun. I had a blast.”
Franklin — a University of California-Berkeley signee — will have her swan song at the Regis Jesuit pool on Jan. 15 along with the team’s other seniors when they play host to Cherry Creek on Senior Night.
Sitting in the small bleachers lining the pool as she had many times in the past, Franklin’s mother, D.A., was grateful for the warm reception her daughter received during the meet. There had been some fears on the family’s part that an Olympian swimming in a regular prep meet wouldn’t be fair.
Instead, Highlands Ranch swimmers recorded video of Franklin swimming from the pool deck, asked her for pictures and autographs afterwards and relished the experience.
“I was just glad nobody booed her,” D.A. Franklin said. “It was a great day.”
Franklin’s teammates and friends, such as fellow senior Abby Cutler, also enjoyed the experience and said it felt totally natural.
“It was just like normal, honestly; there was that extra added energy, but Missy just fits right in with us,” said Cutler, who finished second in the 200 freestyle.
“I knew she was going to swim with us for awhile because it’s our second to last home meet of the year, but I think a lot of the younger girls were surprised and excited she’d be swimming with us today.”
With Franklin’s presence helping to fill the stands with spectators and media for the meet with the Falcons, the rest of coach Nick Frasersmith’s team put on a strong showing in its first meet since the end of winter break, taking first in 11 of the 12 events despite working through sore muscles.
Kaylie Breslin won the 50 freestyle, McKensi Austin topped diving, Delaney Lanker claimed the 100 butterfly, Taylor Wilson took the 100 freestyle, Lindsay Kriz finished first in the 100 backstroke and Sydney Cutler captured the 100 breaststroke to round out the top results for Regis Jesuit.
Freshman Lindsay Painton — who was second to Franklin in the 500 freestyle — swam with Franklin and Wilson on the 200 and 400 freestyle relays, while freshman Amy Lenderink was on the 200 free team and also recorded a second-place result in the 100 butterfly.
“We’ve been training really hard all through Christmas, so a lot of us were really tired,” Lanker said. “It’s always fun to have Missy, she always adds a little spunk to the team and her smile. It brings more people in, which is good, because they get to see us swim, too.
“To most people, swimming is just laps and going up and down, but we work really hard and we love what we do.”
Reach Sports Editor Courtney Oakes at [email protected] or 303-750-7555
REGIS JESUIT 227.5, HIGHLANDS RANCH 85.5
200-yard medley relay: 1. Regis Jesuit A (Lindsay Painton, Sydney Cutler, Delaney Lanker, Taylor Wilson), 1 minute, 52.98 seconds (5ASQT); 2. Regis Jesuit B (Kate Roth, Sierra Viereck, Kaylie Breslin, Amy Lenderink), 1:57.94 (5ASQT); 3. Highlands Ranch A, 1:58.84 (5ASQT)
200-yard freestyle: 1. G. Liedy (Highlands Ranch), 2 minutes, 1.59 seconds (5ASQT); 2. Abby Cutler (Regis Jesuit), 2:05.17; 3. Kylie Kachmer (Regis Jesuit), 2:22.16
200-yard individual medley: 1. Missy Franklin (Regis Jesuit), 2 minutes, 2.10 seconds (5ASQT); 2. K. West (Highlands Ranch), 2:22.15; 3. Meggie Chase (Regis Jesuit), 2:22.94
50-yard freestyle: 1. Kaylie Breslin (Regis Jesuit), 25.80 seconds; 2. Erin Whitaker (Regis Jesuit), 26.83; 3. A. Corwin (Highlands Ranch), 28.09
1-meter diving: 1. McKensi Austin (Regis Jesuit), 261.55 points; 2. Kellyn Toole (Regis Jesuit), 223.23; 3. Danielle Clayton (Regis Jesuit), 170.55
100-yard butterfly: 1. Delaney Lanker (Regis Jesuit), 59.65 seconds (5ASQT); 2. Amy Lenderink (Regis Jesuit), 1:01.09 (5ASQT); 3. G. Leidy (Highlands Ranch), 1:02.27 (5ASQT)
100-yard freestyle: 1. Taylor Wilson (Regis Jesuit), 55.69 seconds (5ASQT); 2. Carla Meli (Regis Jesuit), 57.50; 3. A. Corwin (Highlands Ranch), 1:01.16;
500-yard freestyle: 1. Missy Franklin (Regis Jesuit), 4 minutes, 57.71 seconds (5ASQT); 2. Lindsay Painton (Regis Jesuit), 5:29.02 (5ASQT); 3. Fiona Murphy (Regis Jesuit), 6:05.36
200-yard freestyle relay: 1. Regis Jesuit A (Missy Franklin, Amy Lenderink, Lindsay Painton, Taylor Wilson), 1 minutes, 39.10 seconds (5ASQT); 2. Regis Jesuit B (Meggie Chase, Kaylie Breslin, Delaney Lanker, Carla Meli), 1:45.38 (5ASQT); 3. Regis Jesuit C (Natalie Lanker, Lindsay Kriz, Emily Protz, Abby Cutler), 1:48.81
100-yard backstroke: 1. Lindsay Kriz (Regis Jesuit), 1 minute, 6.81 seconds; 2. Emma Colapinto (Regis Jesuit), 1:07.04; 3. D. Colamina (Highlands Ranch), 1:07.91
100-yard breaststroke: 1. Sydney Cutler (Regis Jesuit), 1 minute, 11.97 seconds (5ASQT); 2. K. West (Highlands Ranch), 1:12.33; 3. Claire Middlemist (Regis Jesuit), 1:18.46
400-yard freestyle relay: 1. Regis Jesuit A (Missy Franklin, Taylor Wilson, Delaney Lanker, Lindsay Painton), 3 minutes, 42.25 seconds (5ASQT); 2. Regis Jesuit B (Amy Lenderink, Carla Meli, Lindsay Kriz, Kaylie Breslin), 3:51.94 (5ASQT); 3. Regis Jesuit C (Briana Labrie, Emily Protz, Abby Cutler, Emma Colapinto), 3:58.90 (5ASQT)