FORT COLLINS — The Fairview girls swim team last won a state title in 2004.

In the 11 years that have passed since then, the Knights came agonizingly close to Colorado's prep swimming pinnacle more than any other team, finishing second six times. Tired of repeatedly coming within reach of the state team title only to watch it claimed by another team, the Fairview girls snatched the 5A team championship on Saturday at Edora Pool Ice Center.

The Fairview Knights are the 2016 Class 5A girls swimming and diving state champions.

"There were all kinds of stories in there about things we could have done better," Knights head coach Bob Smartt said. "Better coaching, better preparation, unlucky injuries, all kinds of things we look back on. After all those stories, it's nice to get over that."

Members of the Fairwiew swim team celebrate in the pool after winning the team title at the 5A girls swimming championships in Fort Collins Saturday. More
Members of the Fairwiew swim team celebrate in the pool after winning the team title at the 5A girls swimming championships in Fort Collins Saturday. More photos: (V. Richard Haro / For

The 2016 season won't be remembered by stories of what could have been. Neither will Brittney Beetcher's junior campaign.

Leading the way for the Knights at state, Beetcher entered both the 200-yard freestyle and the 500-yard freestyle finals as the top-seeded swimmer. She brought home state titles in both, winning the 200 by over a second in 1 minute, 51.07 seconds and swimming an automatic All-American time of 4:56.57 in the 500 to blow away the field by nearly four seconds.

"I'm just so happy to be celebrating with my team right now," Beetcher said. "It feels great. Everyone contributed and it wouldn't have happened without the amazing coaching staff at Fairview and our club coaches, everyone. We wanted the team win but we didn't necessarily expect it because you never know what's going to happen. The meet played out in our favor and everyone did exactly what we needed to do to take it home. I'm just proud of my whole team.

"I felt great about my individual events but it really feels like we won it together."

Beetcher was dominant in leading the Knights to a team title. But it took all 32 Knights state qualifiers, which included six freshmen competing in Saturday's finals, to score 288.50 team points and edge Regis Jesuit (260 points) and Fossil Ridge (259) for the team title.

Fairview High School swimmer Brittney Beetcher launches herself to start the 200 yard freestyle at the 5A state meet in Fort Collins Saturday.
Fairview High School swimmer Brittney Beetcher launches herself to start the 200 yard freestyle at the 5A state meet in Fort Collins Saturday. (V. Richard Haro /)

"Almost everyone swam up," Smartt said. "In other words, they improved their place. When you're Brittney and you qualify in first and then you get first, you can't improve. I was doing the math and I think we moved up 31 points against Regis, versus the pro forma from yesterday. We had pointed out what they should score and what we should score and they were going to win if we hadn't improved our placing."

The Knights also got some unexpected help when Fossil Ridge junior Bailey Kovac was disqualified for an illegal turn after winning the 200 individual medley. Kovac's disqualification cost Fossil Ridge 20 team points and also moved Knights senior Sandra Freeman, who finished the race in 2:06.19, up to second place.

In the high-scoring relays, Fairview took third in the 200 medley relay (1:47.00), third in the 200 freestyle (1:37.31) and fourth in the 400 freestyle (3:31.90), the last of which they needed only avoid a disqualification in order to clinch the team title since they were leading Fossil Ridge by 31.50 team points.

For the Monarch Coyotes, who were 15th in the team scoring, University of Wyoming-bound senior Courtney Roeber took second in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:05.43. The Boulder Panthers finished 16th, led by University of Denver-bound senior Josie Valette's fourth-place finishes in both the 50 freestyle (24.23) and the 100 butterfly (56.19).

"I'm really happy with it," Valette said. "Of course, I wish I could have gone a little faster in my fly but this meet is so much fun to go to it's just great to end my senior season on the podium."

The only Broomfield swimmer to reach Saturday's finals, senior Madelaine McClain placed 15th in the 500 freestyle with a time of 5:19.59. Legacy's Shannon Faron finished 16th in both the 50 freestyle (25.01) and 100 freestyle (54.64).

In the team scoring, Broomfield finished 23rd and Legacy finished 32nd.



Class 5A girls swimming and diving championships

At Edora Pool Ice Center

Boulder’s Jose Valette swims in the 400 free relay Saturday at the 5A state meet in Fort Collins.
Boulder's Jose Valette swims in the 400 free relay Saturday at the 5A state meet in Fort Collins. (V. Richard Haro / For

Team scores — Fairview 288.50, Regis Jesuit 260, Fossil Ridge 259, Arapahoe 156, Rock Canyon 127, Chaparral 110, Heritage 105, Rocky Mountain 100, Lewis-Palmer 100, Cherry Creek 96, Mountain Vista 95, Grandview 88, Rampart 62, Douglas County 62, Monarch 57, Boulder 48, ThunderRidge 34, Fort Collins 33, Loveland 33, Chatfield 33, Pomona 32, Smoky Hill 27, Pine Creek 13, Broomfield 13, Greeley West 11, Highlands Ranch 11, Ralston Valley 9, Liberty 8, George Washington 8, Northglenn 7.50, Coronado 4, Legacy 2.

200 medley relay — 1. Fossil Ridge (Bayley Stewart, Jarden Glover, Coleen Gillilan, Lesley-Ann Knee), 1:43.31*; 2. Regis Jesuit, 1:46.89^; 3. Fairview, 1:47.00^; 4. Rock Canyon, 1:47.93; 5. Chaparral, 1:48.32; 6. Rampart, 1:48.86; Cherry Creek, 1:49.04; NP. Heritage, DQ.

200 freestyle — 1. Brittney Beetcher, Fairview, 1:51.07^; 2. Mia Wood, Grandview, 1:52.20^; 3. Lindsay Painton, Regis Jesuit, 1:52.28^; 4. Zarena Brown, Pomona, 1:53.58; 5. Adee Weller, Fairview, 1:53.92; 6. Jamie Nats, Mountain Vista, 1:54.07; 7. Katherine Harston, Heritage, 1:54.63; 8. Meredith Rees, Lewis-Palmer, 1:56.22.

200 IM — 1. Delaney Smith, Arapahoe, 2:05.19^; 2. Sandra Freeman, 2:06.19; 3. Cameron Kovac, Fossil Ridge, 2:06.48; 4. Kaylee Gassen, Chaparral, 2:06.53; 5. Amelie Lessing, Fairview, 2:08.49; 6. Emily Barrier, Rocky Mountain,2:08.99; 7. Jayden Glover, Rossil Ridge, 2:09.03; NP. Bailey Kovac, Fossil Ridge, DQ.

50 freestyle — 1. Abigail Kochevar, Rock Canyon, 23:29*; 2. Coleen Gillilan, Fossil Ridge, 23.53^; 3. Laurel Eiber, Arapahoe, 23.69^; 4. Josie Valette, Boulder, 24.23; 5. Hannah Paris, Chaparral, 24.32; 6. Courtney Roeber, Monarch, 24.45; 7. Sidney Trimm, Monarch, 24.59; 8. Aimee Burton, Highlands Ranch, 24.61.

Diving — 1. Mckensi Austin, Regis Jesuit, 539.90; 2. Julia Benz, Fairview, 467.80; 3. Lexie Barker, Douglas County, 463.60; 4. Becca Hetrick, Lewis-Palmer, 461.55; 5. Samantha Tamborski, Douglas County, 459.35; 6. Anne Kenny, Regis Jesuit, 431.10; 7. Kirsten Belitz, Arapahoe, 425.95; 8. Katie Conn, Broomfield, 419.45.

100 butterfly — 1. Coleen Gillilan, Fossil Ridge, 53.60*; 2. Amy Lendrick, Regis Jesuit, 55:35^; 3. Daphne Williams, Rocky Mountain, 56.12^; 4. Jose Valette, Boulder, 56.19^; 5. Kim Lanaghan, Fairview, 56.68; 6. Natalie Arky, Mountain Vista, 57.03; 7. Patricia Van Law, ThunderRidge, 57.33; 8. Kaylie Breslin, Regis Jesuit, 57.57.

100 freestyle — 1. Kylie Andrews, Heritage, 50.91^; 2. Lindsay Painton, Regis Jesuit, 51.38^; 3. Laurel Eiber, Arapahoe, 51.52^; 4. Emily Barrier, Rocky Mountain, 52.13; 5. Samantha Smith, Regis Jesuit, 52.33; 6. Meredith Rees, Lewis-Palmer, 52.34; 7. Kaylee Gassen, Chaparral, 52.49; 8. Zarena Brown, Pomona, 52.78.

500 freestyle — 1. Brittney Beetcher, Fairview, 4:56.57*; 2. Mia Wood, Grandview, 5:00.25^; 3. Adee Weller, Fairview, 5:07.51; 4. Erin Lang, Loveland, 5:09.22; 5. Peyton Wayment, Chatfield, 5:09.31; 6. Katherine Harston, Heritage, 5:09.67; 7. Sandra Freeman, Fairview, 5:12.28; 8. Sebastiana Saya, Cherry Creek, 5:15.54.

200 free relay — 1. Regis Jesuit (Amy Lenderink, Jennae Frederick, Meriel Upton, Lindsay Painton), 1:35.86*; 2. Fossil Ridge, 1:36.32^; 3. Fairview, 1:37.31^. 4. Chaparral, 1:38.25; 5. Rocky Mountain, 1:38.32; 6. Arapahoe, 1:39.27.7. Lewis-Palmer, 1:39.38; 8. Cherry Creek, 1:39.60.

100 backstroke — 1. Abigail Kochevar, Rock Canyon, 55:00*; 2. Bayley Stewart, Fossil Ridge, 55:31*; 3. Elsa Littleken, Douglas County, 56.01^; 4. Kylie Andrews, Heritage, 56.02^; 5. Natalie Arky, Mountain Vista, 56.17^; 6. Patricia Van Law, ThunderRidge, 56.61^; 7. Audrey Reimer, Fort Collins, 56.67^; 8. Makenna Mathieson, Rock Canyon, 58.97.

100 breaststroke — 1. Bailey Kovac, Fossil Ridge, 1:03.67^; 2. Courtney Roeber, Monarch, 1:05.43; 3. Cameron Kovac, Fossil Ridge, 1:06.08; 4. Jayden Glover, Fossil Ridge, 1:06.13; 5. Edenna Chen, Rampart, 1:06.56; 6. Delaney Smith, Arapahoe, 1:06.86; 7. Ashley Peet, Loveland, 1:07.34; 8. Elise Johnson, Greeley West, 1:07.57.

400 free relay — 1. Regis Jesuit (Samantha Smith, Meriel Upton, Isabella Schultze, Lindsay Painton), 3:28.55*; 2. Arapahoe, 3:28.72*; 3. Fossil Ridge, 3:28.89*. 4. Fairview, 3:31.90^; 5. Heritage, 3:32.62^; 6. Rock Canyon, 3:34.81; 7. Mountain Vista, 3:34.98; 8. Grandview, 3:37.01.

* denotes auto All-American

^ denotes All-American considering


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