Fairview senior Abbie Houck will attempt to contribute as best as she can to what the Knights hope will be a run toward a top-five finish at the Class 5A state finals this weekend.
Just how effective the injured Houck will be remains to be seen.
Sidelined almost a month due to a torn rotator cuff in her left shoulder, Houck has been entered for the preliminary heats of the state championship on Friday in the 100 freestyle, and coach Bob Smartt remains hopeful Houck still may be able to help Fairview in the 200 freestyle relay.
"She's able to dive now, and while she still doesn't have full range of motion, she's been able to swim and improve a little bit each day," Smartt said. "Our hope is for her to swim at least one race on Friday and see where we stand."
Houck, a state champion in the 500 freestyle two years ago, is at her best in the distance freestyle events, but after being sidelined about a month Houck's conditioning is not where it needs to be to compete in the longer races. After missing last year's state finals in order to focus on her training for last summer's U.S. Olympic Trials, expect Houck to make every effort to contribute as much as she can in her final high school event.
"A healthy Abbie would be 32 to 34 points for us, worst-case," Smartt said. "Hopefully she can help us in the relays and she might even still be able to place in the 100 (free)."
The Class 5A state finals will be held Friday and Saturday at the Edora Pool and Ice Center in Fort Collins.
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