Swimmers prepare for meet in Craig

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— Two weeks ago Paul Rose dominated his age division in Rangely, taking home the high-point award, four first-place medals and a new pool record in the 50-meter freestyle.

Rose is expecting to find rougher waters this weekend when the Steamboat Springs swim team heads to Craig for its final regular-season meet of the summer.

Rose will face some new challenges and new competition as he steps into an older age division for the first time this year.

Rose has been swimming in the 13-14 age division this season, but thanks to his birthday, the top Steamboat swimmer will have move up to the 14-15 age division for this week's meet in Craig.

"I'm not expecting to win," Rose said. "I just want to keep up with those guys in that older division. It should be a challenge, but I'm looking forward to it."

Assistant coach Patti Worsley said most of the swimmers on the Steamboat team also are looking forward to this weekend's meet, which will begin Friday morning with the 8 and younger division.

Some of the older divisions will compete in the afternoon, with swimming continuing through Sunday.

"This is a big meet for our team," Worsley said. "I have 62 swimmers going, and it will be the last chance many of these swimmers have to qualify to swim in the end-of-season meets."

Steamboat took 30 swimmers to the Rangely meet June 28-29.

The team finished second overall and had four individual swimmers collect high-point honors.

"Paul (Rose) had one of his best meets of the season," Worsley said. "It was his last chance in that age division and I think he wanted to go out on top."

Rose earned first-place finishes in the 100-meter breaststroke, 200-meter individual medley, 100-meter butterfly and 50-meter freestyle.

His time of 25.63 seconds in the 50 freestyle was a new pool record in Rangely.

Other swimmers earning high-point honors included Lucy Newman in the 8 and younger, Cole Worsley in the 11-12 division and Tina Roberts in the 15-18 girls.

Worsley said the format of this weekend's meet in Craig and the proximity to Steamboat, means many Steamboat swimmers will make the trip and compete -- especially the team's younger swimmers.

"We will have a lot of 8-and-under swimmers at the meet," Worsley said. "This one is very popular with our swimmers because it's just a lot of fun."

Worsley said the meet is a good opportunity for Steamboat swimmers to earn medals since they will be divided into three different divisions.

The top swimmers will all compete in the A level, leaving the B and C levels for those who don't normally earn medals.

Worsley said the Steamboat team would kick off its week with a pancake breakfast Thursday.

The swimmers will then head to Craig to open competition Friday.

On July 18-20 they will swim in the Western Slope Championships in Rangely.

The following weekend several Steamboat swimmers will compete at the Junior Olympic Championships in Fort Collins.

The 8 and younger squad will take to the pool July 30 for its age division championships, and the Summer Club Championships will take place Aug. 1-3.

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