That’s all the brushing up on diving Joseph Killpack needed in practice the day before in order to earn a score good enough to qualify for State. He hadn’t dived since last year’s Terry Bartlett Last Chance swim meet but did dive regularly in middle school.
“It’s super exciting,” Killpack said. “About halfway through I realized I actually had a shot.”
His last dive earned his best score with a 28.10 for a back somersault half twist, a maneuver he had just learned in practice the previous day.
Killpack took third in diving with a 148.2 score and won the 500 yard freestyle in a state-qualifying time, thus qualifying him for every event at the upcoming state swim meet next week in Laramie.
To the knowledge of coach Jason Koperski, it’s the first time in school history a boys swimmer has qualified in every single event.
“That wasn’t even on the radar entering the meet,” he said.
Cody won the three-team meet, with Powell taking second and Worland third.
With the conference meet already behind them, the Last Chance meet offers an opportunity for already qualified swimmers to relax a little and try different events.
“It makes them realize when they start having fun all of the pressure is taking off and they say, ‘Oh, that worked,’” Koperski said.
Bradley Fick also gave diving a try. Although he back-flopped on his first jump, he bounced back on the next four dives including an inward dive on his last that doubled his overall score.
“You just have to go out there and send,” Fick said.
Aside from Killpack, the Broncs had no new state qualifiers but did have some close results.
Peter Kim notched a personal record in the 200 yard free and won the race, but came just 1.01 seconds short of qualifying for state.
“I’m proud of where I am at right now,” the sophomore said. “It’s a little disappointing I didn’t qualify, but when I started swimming I never thought I could do this.”
Will Law also came within .21 seconds of qualifying for state in the 100 yard breastsroke, taking second in the race.
Joren Vipperman won the 100 yard free and took second in the 50 yard free, and Trevor Freyder took third in the 100 free.
Seniors Freyder, Ethan Hope and Andrew Eissinger were honored during the meet with a roast from Koperski, an annual tradition.
“Everything has gone by so fast,” Eissinger said. “I’m going to miss it. I got faster, a little stronger too.”
After Eissinger wore a full medieval ensemble – chainmail and helmet included – for the entire day of their conference meet, Koperski said he had to tap into that for a Monty Python swim racing rendition.
“It was just too good,” Koperski said.
Koperski also chided Hope for considering 1980s music “classic rock” and also offered Freyder some good-natured ribbing.
“Swimming has been really positive in my life, I absolutely love everyone on the team,” Hope said.
Now, the three Broncs who have qualified for individual events at state and relay members will focus their attention on state.
“Swimming can be very hard, it feels like suffering,” Freyder said. “The work I’ve put in paid off, but the biggest thing about swimming is spending time with the team.”
Terry Bartlett Last Chance
Teams - 1. Cody 74, 2. Powell 64, 3. Worland 30.
200 yard medley relay - 1. Cody (Joseph Killpack, William Law, Bradley Fick, Trevor Freyder) 1:55:25.
200 yard free – 1. Peter Kim 2:14.01.
50 yard free – 2. Joren Vipperman 26.67, 3. Jonah Woods 26.90, 5. Andrew Eissinger 27.58, 7. Law 28.55.
1 meter diving - 3. Killpack 148.20, 4. Law 123.60, 5. Parker Laing, 120.35, 6. Fick 91.05.
100 yard free - 1. Vipperman 1:01.17, 3. Freyder 1:02.40, 6. Ethan Hope 1:06.20.
500 yard free - 1. Killpack 5:54.33, 2. Kim 6:16.91.
200 yard free relay - 1. Cody (Woods, Hope, Kim, Vipperman) 1:49.58.
100 yard backstroke - 3. Woods 1:23.17, 4. Freyder 1:24.38, 5. Eissinger 1:24.86, 6. Laing 1:43.68
100 yard breast - 2. Law 1:16.71, 5. Fick 1:19.36
400 yard free relay - 1.Cody (Vipperman, Freyder, Killpack, Fick) 4:05.75.