BOULDER — The name Valette has become synonymous with Boulder swimming.
Recent graduate Josie Valette helped make her mark on the Panthers program and the everlasting mark of her work is proudly displayed on the record board behind Lane 1 at the North Boulder Rec Center.
The highlight of an impressive freshman class for coach Jay Turner's Panthers is Grace Valette, who when all is said and done, would love nothing more than to add her name next to her sisters on that board.
"It's definitely a goal of mine," said Grace Valette, who won two events on Tuesday in the annual tri-meet between Boulder, Fairview and Monarch.
Moments after swimming the lead leg of the opening 200-yard medley relay, Valette went up against Monarch's Sidney Trimm in the final heat of the 200 freestyle.
Trimm held the lead for the first 180 yards of the race before Valette found another gear in the final 20 yards. Her powerful finish propelled her to a victory in a time of 2 minutes, 2.90 seconds to Trimm's 2:03.40.
"I didn't feel like I was going that strong in the beginning and towards the end I started to think that maybe I could win this," she said. "I started to push more and more and I got ahead of Sidney, and surprised myself to the finish."
The complete opposite of her older sister — now swimming for the University of Denver — who was a sprinter, the younger Valette made it look easy in the lengthy 500 free. She won by six seconds in a finishing time of 5:38.25.
"She is impressive and just as impressive as her swimming is her early formation of leadership and responsibility on this team," Turner said. "She has embraced the opportunity. We have great leaders already, but she leads by example and she is using high school swimming as a fun tool to swim with and through and for each other on a team.
"And she is getting the most out of herself for it."
The rest of the night belonged to Fairview. The Knights' impressive depth was on display from the get-go. And as strong as the Boulder freshman class is going to be, Fairview's sophomore class has been nothing short of spectacular in the first two months of the season.
Tenth-graders accounted for wins in the 50 free (Una Forsythe in 25.34), 100 fly (Amelie Lessing in 59.77), 100 free (Kaia Reznicek in 55.40) and 100 back (Mya Drost-Parra in 1:01.80).
It was Reznicek's victory in the 100 free that caught the eye of veteran Fairview coach Bob Smartt on Tuesday night.
"Every meet she has been doing personal best's in the 100 fly, 100 back and 100 free, so she's got us totally bewildered as to what we should swim her at state because she's improving so much," said Smartt, whose team captured the Boulder County Meet on Saturday at VMAC. "It's a wonderful problem to have."
Fairview senior Brittney Beetcher won the 200 IM by six seconds in 2:13.71. Other Knights winner on Tuesday included Rya Muller (diving) and freshman Isabel Rich (100 breast). Fairview also won all three relay events.
FAIRVIEW 243.5, MONARCH 68.5
MONARCH 168, BOULDER 126
FAIRVIEW 241, BOULDER 68
At North Boulder Rec Center
200 medley relay — 1. Fairview (Julianna Haensly, Isabel Rich, Una Forsythe, Amelie Lessing) 1:52.98; 2. Fairview 1:53.06; 3. Monarch 1:55.54.
200 freestyle — 1. Grace Valette, Boulder2:02.90; 2. Sidney Trimm, Monarch, 2:03.40; 3. Kim Lanaghen, Fairview, 2:05.14.
200 IM — 1. Brittney Beetcher, Fairview, 2:13.71; 2. Morgan Simon, Fairview, 2:19.35; 3. Emilia Culberson, Boulder, 2:21.71.
50 freestyle — 1. Una Forsythe, Fairview, 25.34; 2. Emma Perkins, Fairview, 26.05; 3. Riley Tapley, Fairview, 26.80.
Diving — 1. Rya Muller, Fairview, 211.75; 2. Madie Ausley, Fairview, 197.15; 3. Sammy Denninger, Fairview, 177.75.
100 butterfly — 1. Amelie Lessing, Fairview, 59.77; 2. Mikayla Seigal, Fairview, 1:00.08; 3. Brittney Beetcher, Fairview, 1:01.05.
100 freestyle — 1. Kaia Reznicek, Fairview, 55.40; 2. Emilia Culberson, Boulder, 57.29; T3. Kira Rimstidt, Fairview and Randi Rens, Monarch, 57.61.
500 freestyle — 1. Grace Vallette, Boulder, 5:38.25; 2. Sofia Orrey-Valencia, Boulder, 5:44.21; 3. Natalie Brent, Fairview, 5:57.35.
200 free relay — 1. Fairview (Mikayla Seigal, Morgan Simon, Kaia Reznicek, Brittney Beetcher) 1:43.00; 2. Fairview 1:44.46; 3. Boulder 1:44.58.
100 backstroke — 1. Mya Drost-Parra, Fairview, 1:01.80; 2. Amelie Lessing, Fairview, 1:03.22; 3. Emma Perkins, Fairview, 1:03.94.
100 breaststroke — 1. Isabel Rich, Fairview, 1:09.56; 2. Amelia Heckman, Fairview, 1:15.39; 3. Kim Lanaghen, Fairview, 1:16.07.
400 free relay — 1. Fairview (Mikayla Seigal, Una Forsythe, Brittney Beetcher, Amelie Lessing) 3:45.19; 2. Fairview 3:49.12; 3. Monarch 4:03.10.
* — denotes state-qualifying mark