Tigers pounce on Columbine

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By Joe Vaccarelli

Columbine swimming head coach Kristi Marosy knew her team was in for a long day against a very good Lakewood team.

“They’re probably in the top three of the league this year in 5A,” Marosy said. “It’s gonna be a good meet and the guys are gonna give it all they got, but Lakewood’s a tough squad.”

Columbine fell behind early, trailing 70-32 at the diving break and couldn’t catch up, despite a late charge, as they fell to the Tigers 152-121 on April 30 at Ridge Recreation Center.

The Rebels were helped out by three disqualifications in the 100-yard butterfly as Aaron Bakkie, who finished third with a time of 1 minute, 2.03 seconds, was declared the winner.

Bakkie also went on to claim the 100-yard backstroke with a staggering eight-second victory over teammate Grant Stravrakas. Columbine would round out a top-three finish in this event as Dan Fairbairn came in third.

Freshman Andy Leach also had a strong run in the 500-yard freestyle, coming in second with a time of 5:46.07.

The Rebels also had a nice showing in the 200-yard individual medley as sophomore Conlan Reardon and Stravrakas finished second and third respectively. Reardon’s time of 1:56.90 was just 0.17 behind Erik Latos of Lakewood.

“We swam the best we could,” Marosy said of her squad.

It just wasn’t enough to top a tough Lakewood team who would have a first-place finisher in 10 of the 12 varsity events.

“It wasn’t my best day, but I just gotta practice harder,” said Ben Crawford, who would finish fourth in the 200-yard freestyle with a respectable time of 2:05.87. “Our team overall, we could have done better, it wasn’t our best meet definitely.”

Columbine’s relays had some decent finishes as their 200-yard medley relay team came in second with a time of 1:57.29. The 200-yard freestyle relay also finished second, barely edging out Lakewood’s B-squad with a time of 1:40.37. The 400-yard freestyle relay would finish a distant third with a time of 4:20.42, nearly 35 seconds behind Lakewood’s top group.