Ten years on: Central’s last girls swimming and diving championship

In 16 years of professional newspapering I’ve seen a lot of stuff. Blowouts, squeakers, 0-0 ties, four-overtime ridiculousness, 90-point bull rides – it takes all kinds to make an interesting existence in this line of work.

Few events have equaled the sheer excitement of the 2004 WHSAA State Swim and Dive Championships.

Cheyenne Central won its second straight championship by one point over host Gillette. One. Point. Continue reading

Central swimmers use licks for good luck

Cheyenne Central swimmer Katie Summers was on both winning relays during the SWAC meet. Miranda Grubbs/staff

Cheyenne Central swimmer Katie Summers was on both winning relays during the SWAC meet. Miranda Grubbs/staff

CHEYENNE – The world is still trying to figure out how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsiepop.

But the number of licks it takes to relax a group of Cheyenne Central girls relay swimmers? Four. One for each skullcap.

Before the start of every relay, the four members of Lady Indians team take a lighthearted moment to relax and lick each others skull caps.

It’s a strange tradition. But you can’t argue with the results.

At Friday’s Southern Wyoming Athletic Conference finals, Central won two of the three relay events and placed second in other.

“We decided it was lucky my freshman year. The seniors would lick all the freshmen’s caps and it kind of went from there. We have a lot of superstitions. It helps us get in the right mindset,” Hannah Thomas said. She was on both winning relays. Continue reading

East’s Urban ready for swim team leadership role

CHEYENNE — It should come as no surprise to anyone who has seen her compete that Abby Urban spent most of the summer in the pool.

After finishing runner-up in the 500-yard freestyle and the third in the 200-yard freestyle at the 2012 Class 4A girls state meet, the Cheyenne East junior used her time off from school to refine her swimming skills even further.

“I swam a lot,” Urban said with a laugh. “Every day we were in the water.”

All her offseason training culminated with one of the biggest swim of her career — the USA Swimming Zone Championship in Fresno, Calif. Continue reading

South divers use summer camps to up skill sets

Amber Codr

Amber Codr

CHEYENNE — Amber Codr made a decision on how to spend a portion of her vacation early.

The Cheyenne South junior got word that the University of Wyoming would be hosting a diving camp this summer. Whether or not to attend was an easy choice.

“This year is my junior year so it’s really my year to make it shine if I want to go far with diving. And hearing that the college I want to go to had something promoting diving was really neat to hear about so I jumped all over it,” Codr said. Continue reading

East girls’ sluggish starts are a cause for concern

Cheyenne East guard Kayla Cheney tries to weave through the defense of Cheyenne South's Stephanie Dickinson and Vanessa Munoz. Michael Smith/staff

Cheyenne East guard Kayla Cheney tries to weave through the defense of Cheyenne South’s Stephanie Dickinson and Vanessa Munoz. Michael Smith/staff

CHEYENNE — The end result is not the problem for the Cheyenne East girls.

The beginning is a totally different story.

In two weekend games, the Lady Thunderbirds had to make huge runs in the second half to put their opponent away. It’s an issue the girls have noted and are trying to deal with.

“We’re better than that. How we finish is how we should start,” East post player Elissia Johnson said. Continue reading

Central relay team makes statement with win

CHEYENNE — Coming into Saturday’s Cheyenne Invitational, the Cheyenne Central girls 200-yard freestyle relay team had the third best time among the 12 teams competing at the meet.

When the meet was over, the Lady Indians had proven it’s not what you’ve done in the past but what you can do today.

The team of Taylor Segrave, Kendra McIlvain, Katie Summers and Mariah Miller swam the event in 1 minute, 46.67 seconds holding off Jackson (1:46.79) and Gillette (1:47.24).

“The whole point of (these teams) being here today was just seeing where we’re going to be at in state. I think coming up and out-touching Gillette (was) a huge confidence booster for us,” Mariah Miller said. Continue reading

Central’s Spiker makes the most of a long day in the pool

Cheyenne Central's Ann Spiker finished second in the 100-yard breaststroke on Saturday. Miranda Grubbs/staff

CHEYENNE — Onlookers might have been a little shocked my Ann Spiker’s performance in the 100-yard breaststroke during Saturday’s Cheyenne Triangular at Cheyenne South High School.

Spiker wasn’t.

The Lady Indian swimmer knocked more than a second off her previous best time to swim the race in 1 minute, 16.52 seconds. She fell just short to Cheyenne East’s Jonna Brown (1:11.35) who has been the standard barer locally in the event the last few seasons. .

“I’ve definitely been working really hard,” Spiker said. “I’ve just been encouraged taking off seconds every time you race no matter where it is.” Continue reading

East swimmer Abby Urban knows fast

Forget the fact that she’s a freshman. That’s irrelevant. Forget that she participates in four different events ranging from tests of pure speed to endurance.

Abby Urban is fast. Not just fast — scary fast.

The Cheyenne East swimmer comes away from just about every meet with multiple top three finishes in the events she takes part in. Tuesday against Laramie was no different.

Continue reading