Santa Fe Prep girls highlight 8th grader Sophia Gossum and freshman Chelsea Griscom for theannual weekend state swimming-diving championships at Albuquerque Academy And the boys in the spotlight are Griffins’ senior Riley Kinlaw and Santa Fe High seniors Luke Shankin and Bradley Moffett, with both schools qualifying three relays
By Arnie Leshin
Sometimes swimmers (and divers) have to wait for their senior season before qualifying for the annual state championships that run Friday and Saturday at Albuquerque Academy.
Not so with Santa Fe Prep’s 8th grader Sophia Gossum and freshman Chelsea Griscom. They are off to an early start as both qualified in two individual races as well as swimming legs on the relay teams.
Are they nervous? Who knows, only they know. But after a stellar regular season, they should be wet enough to test the waters when the championships begin Friday morning.
Gossum qualified in the 50- and 100-yard freestyles, having a best time of 24.96 in the 50 and 54.77 in the 100, where she does have the fourth-fastest qualifying time.
While Gossum is best in the freestyle, Griscom will be doing the freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke and butterfly in the 100-yard individual medley. Her qualifying time was 2:22.58. Then there’s the 100 breaststroke where Griscom timed 1:11.55.
The Griffins have qualified for three of the relays, and so it will be Gossum, Criscom, sophomore Hayden Colfax and junior Arielie Nathan or senior Kate Schiliro as the foursome.
In the 200 medley relay, Prep has clocked a best of 2:02.66. In the 200 freestyle relay, the quartet turned in a time of 1:56.53. And in the 400 freestyle relay, it swam 4:04.64.
To complete the girl’s lineup is St. Michael’s senior Jacqueline Hay, the lone member from her school, and in the 100 backstroke with a qualifying time of 1:04.61. She also qualified last year.
Not only did the young Griffin girls do well in the districts championships, so did their boys.
Most of these names are familiar. Start with Santa Fe Prep senior Riley Kinlaw who has qualified for state since 8th grade. He usually qualifies for 5-6 events, but there’s a limit at state, and so he will do the 100 breaststroke where he qualified in 1:03.75, and have the company of his brother Jordan, a junior whose best time was 1:0527.
Riley is also set for the 100 butterfly along with Santa Fe High senior Luke Shankin. As did Riley, Shankin and senior teammate Bradley Moffett tuned up with impressive season. Riley’s best time in the fly 54.59, while Shankin did 54.83.
Shankin also made it to the 200 freestyle with a qualifying time of 1:50.26, and Moffett the same in the 50 freestyle where he turned in a 23:15.
No girls from the Santa Fe area qualified in the diving, but the boys had two in the Demons’ Dante Hernandez and the Griffins’ Michael Vimont.
Both Santa Fe High and Prep also qualified in relays, the Demons in the 200 medley in 1:50.55, in the 200 freestyle relay in 1:35.17, and in the 400 freestyle relay in 3:33.81.
It is in the 400 freestyle relay that Santa Fe High has a faster qualifying time than Prep, as it made state in 3:32.55. In the 200 freestyle relay, the Griffins did 1:35.17 and the Demons 1:39.06.
The expected quartets for Santa Fe High and Prep will probably be Shankin, Moffett, Angel Code and Brady Petty for the Demons and the Kinlaw brothers, Reed Kellam and Cyrpess Hayunga for the Griffins.
And once again it will be a busy two days for Riley Kinlaw, who figures his best chance to medal will be the breaststroke. Same with Shankin.
As for the girls of Prep, Gossum and Griscom are getting early experience of a state championship and whatever they do this weekend will only make them better, Gossum for four more years and Griscom for three. Schiliro is the lone senior and is happy to make it to state same as her underclassmen teammates.