NORTHGLENN – Morgan Friesen is three-quarters of the way to pulling off a rarity in Colorado high school swimming.
The Windsor junior won her third Class 4A state title in the 100-yard breaststroke Saturday, putting her in position to pull off a quadruple in the event next year.
It is one of the hardest strokes for a competitive swimmer to master, but Friesen has achieved that. In fact, she set the all-classification record in the event last year.
“I had issues learning it,” she said. “It was my weak stroke.”
Because of that, she began working harder.
Then, “Something clicked,” she said of the mechanics starting to come together.
It was doubly sweet as earlier in the afternoon she won her first state title in the 200 individual medley.
Friesen is already focused on next year. She swims year-round and her club workouts begin Monday.
The day belonged to Valor Christian, however. The Eagles ran away with the team title at the state meet. Scoring 320 points to outdistance Evergreen by 68 points. Cheyenne Mountain was third with 249.
The Eagles’ Brooke Stenstrom set a 4A state record in the 50 freestyle. Her time of 23.22 seconds eclipsed her year-old mark by .21. It was also an All-American time. It marked Stenstrom’s third straight state title in the event.
She also took the title in the 100 freestyle, which she also won as a sophomore, in All-American time (50.63).
Stenstrom capped off her day by anchoring the Eagles’ winning 200 medley and 400 freestyle relay teams.
The medley team broke Manitou Springs’ 4A record, which was set in Friday’s preliminaries. Both teams swam All-American times.
For her efforts, the Stanford-bound senior was selected as the meet’s swimmer of the year.
Her mother Lori is the Eagles’ head coach. She came into the state meet knowing her team was good. She just wasn’t sure how good.
“They exceeded my expectations,” Lori Stenstrom said. “Every single girl on this team stepped up.”
Kate McDonald of Evergreen was a repeat champion in the 500 freestyle.
Alex Reddington of St. Mary’s Academy swam an All-American time in the 100 butterfly, setting a 4A record of 55.05 and edging out last year’s champion, Cat Wright of Cheyenne Mountain.