Steamboat Springs Blake and Cole Worsley are spending their summer in Denver, but the brothers continue to make waves in the Steamboat Springs swimming community.
The Worsleys grew up in Steamboat and were members of Steamboat's Team Lightning swim squad. They recently returned from the Sectional Swim Meet in Portland, Ore., where they posted top individual results en route to helping their new team, the Denver University Hilltoppers, place second overall.
"It was a great meet. It was a step forward in my career, and I'm really happy because I finally made it back to the finals in a big meet," Blake Worsley said.
Blake is a member of the University of Denver swim team, and younger brother Cole swam for Moffat County High School this spring and will be a junior at Steamboat Springs High School in the fall. Blake will be a junior at DU this fall.
In Portland, Blake posted impressive results against some of the best swimmers from the Western half of the United States. Blake finished with personal best times in the 400-meter freestyle, where his time of 4 minutes, 8.05 seconds earned him a fifth-place finish. Blake was sixth in the 200-meter freestyle with a time of 1:55.76, seventh in the 100-meter freestyle at 53.11, and eighth in the 50-meter freestyle at 24.57.
Blake also was part of the Hilltoppers' third-place, 800-meter freestyle relay team; fourth-place, 200-meter medley relay team; and sixth-place, 400- and 200-meter freestyle relay teams.
The top finishes earned Blake an invitation to the USA National Swimming Championships that will be held in Indianapolis from July 31 to Aug. 4, where he hopes to earn the right to swim at the Olympic trials. Blake will leave for Indiana on Monday.
"I'm really excited about swimming in that meet," Blake said. "I've been tapering, so it will be interesting to see what I can do and what my times will be. Hopefully, I can chop some time and make the Olympic Trials."
Cole will not go to the national meet, but also enjoyed a strong showing at the Sectional swim meet in Portland. His time of 24.87 in the 50-meter freestyle placed him 26th in the field of more than 100 swimmers. He missed the junior national cut by less than a tenth of second.
"I was a little disappointed that I didn't make the junior national cut, but it was a very good experience for me," Cole Worsley said. "I learned how big a meet can be, and how fast you have to be to make the finals. Everything is a factor at this level," Cole said. "It comes down to the number of breaths you have to take or how quickly you get your hand to the wall."
He also posted a 57th-place finish in the 100-meter butterfly and 54th in the 100-meter freestyle. He had personal best times in both events.
Cole plans to attend the national championships to watch his brother. He also will continue to train at the meet for the zonal championships that will take place in Farmington, N.M., in early August.
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