When the Monarch Coyotes swim team faces Fairview in the first meet of the season, one of their top seniors will not be in the pool.
Katey Lewicki, a senior who is coming off a state championship win in the 100 backstroke and a third-place finish in the 200 IM at the Class 4A state meet last season, is tapering this week in preparation to try and post a qualifying time in an upcoming meet that would allow her the chance to compete at the Olympic Trials in Omaha, Neb., next summer.
“I have another opportunity at Junior Nationals next week,” Lewicki said. “I’m hoping to make the cut there.”
Lewicki has worked tirelessly with her club team since the end of the high school season with the hopes of posting a qualifying time. So far, she has come up just short, but more work in and out of the pool has her believing it can be done next week.
“I’ve been working really hard,” Lewicki said. “I’ve started to lift and do a couple different things in the water to better my stroke. It’s really been showing. I have had a couple meets where I have gotten the best time in meets where I wasn’t rested, so I’m excited to see what this season has to hold.”
Once her run at Junior Nationals is complete, Lewicki will rejoin the Monarch High School swim team for competition and serve as one of the team leaders for the upcoming season.
Monarch will have new leadership in the coaching staff with Emily Sampl, the Boulder boys swimming head coach, taking over for the program this season. Lewicki is one of eight returning state qualifiers back, and with a strong freshmen class coming in, the team is hoping to improve off their eighth-place finish at the Class 4A state meet.
“We have a lot of really good freshmen, and the girls who have been on the team have been working hard,” Lewicki said. “I’m excited to see how many state qualifiers we can get and how our relays will do. I really hope I can win the 100 back again and hopefully win another event (at state).”
In order for Monarch to tap its full potential, Lewicki will be called on to show the newcomers to the team what it will take to compete at the highest level, all while finding the balance of competing for both her high school and club team this season, as do most of the top swimmers in the area.
“I try to be here as much as I can and to be open to anyone that wants to come up and talk with me,” Lewicki said. “We have really good captains on our team and who are really good friends, so I just help them if they need anything and I’m always open for people to come talk to me.
“For the other year-round swimmers on the team, I think I’m a good leader for them. We have to work together to make sure we can manage both the year round and high school seasons together. I just try to help them in a way to get more practices and still have fun and not get worked out.”
Lewicki is also set for her future swim career having signed to swim at NC State next year. With her future set, the goal at the start of the high school season begins with reaching a major milestone for next summer. After making a final push to Olympic Trials, the objective it will be about getting to the top of the medal podium again at the state meet in February.
“I think it’s going to be a good season,” Lewicki said.