THORNTON | With a very young contingent, the Smoky Hill girls swim team finished 23rd in the Class 5A girls state swim meet, which concluded Friday at the Veterans’ Memorial Aquatic Center.

Of the four swimmers to hit the water in the championship/consolation session of the two-day meet and scored all 21 of their points, three of them were freshmen in Cameryn Walkup, Mya Noffsinger and Eve Niemann, who were joined by junior Alana Behrens.

Coach Susan Stone’s Smoky Hill team got a good start on the future with a strong showing that was led by Walkup, who made a championship final in her first season in high school swimming and also swam on a 200 yard medley relay that finished 18th.

Walkup came into the meet as the No. 7 seed in the 500 yard freestyle and though she ended up dropping a spot to eighth in the championship final, her time of 5 minutes, 8.74 seconds, bettered the 5:09.20 that had been her previous season best. She was even faster in prelims with a time of 5:05.10 that was sixth-fastest.

The 200 yard medley relay team of Walkup, Noffsinger and Niemann — who all qualified for individual events as well — and Behrens swam slower in the prelims than the team’s seed time, but bettered it in the consolation final with a 1:52.55.

Noffsinger came up just short of second swims (which went to the top 20) in both the 100 backstroke (where she was the first alternate as she was 21st in prelims and swam faster than her seed time) and the 200 yard individual medley (in which she was 22nd).

The Buffaloes were also just outside of making the consolation final in the 200 free relay with the team of Behrens, sophomores Morgan Goodrich and Vanessa Obot and freshman Greta Smolenski finished 22nd. That was the same spot for the 400 free relay team of Walkup, Noffsinger, Goodrich and junior Tess Durrell.

Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports

Courtney Oakes is sports Editor and photographer with Sentinel Colorado. A Denver East High School alum. He came to the Sentinel in 2001 and since then has received a number of professional awards from...

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