THORNTON – They didn’t win any of the races on Friday, but the victories were numerous.
As a team, Mullen’s Mustangs officially placed 11th in the Class 4A Championships for boys swimming and diving.
Even better than officially, they improved times in multiple events, put up a strong showing with seven competitors and gained valuable experience for the future.
“We did really well,” first-year Mustangs coach Jess Sanford said. “A lot of guys dropped times in every event and our relays were good, really good.”
Tops for Mullen was senior Noah Maestas, a recently graduated senior who will swim at Seattle.
“It was real good, real good,” he said. “The water was real nice, last meet as a high-schooler and we ended with a bang.”
Maestas had Mullen’s top individual performances, fifth in the 100-yard breaststroke (57.96 seconds) and sixth in the 200 individual medley (1:56.21). Maestas also helped the 200 freestyle relay to eighth and the 200 medley relay to 11th.
“It could have been better,” Maestas said, “but I gave it my all and in the end it’s all I can do.”
Junior Jack Krza was part of the 400 freestyle relay that improved by 11 seconds.
“I haven’t been here in two years,” Krza said, “and being here for a second time is a lot different. I got to swim and there were more opportunities this year.”
Looking ahead, he said, “we sadly lose Noah Maestas, so everyone else here will be back. I think we have a great shot next year to improve times and maybe we’ll add some more kids next year.”
Even the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that delayed and shortened the season didn’t deter the Mustangs.
“It has been quite the weird COVID season,” Maestas said. “A lot of unexpected things, but in the end we’re here, we’re racing and we’re going fast, so there are really no complaints at the end of the day for us.”
CLASS 4A CHAMPIONSHIPS
At VMAC, Thornton
Team champion: Silver Creek 314 points. 11. Mullen, tied with Air Academy 117.
200-yard medley relay – 11. Noah Mooney, Austin Linn, Noah Maestas, James Galligan, 1 minute, 42.13 seconds.
200 individual medley – 6. Noah Maestas, 1:56.21; 12. Austin Linn, 2:03.78; 20. Noah Mooney, 2:06.62.
50 freestyle – 20. James Galligan, 23.08.
500 freestyle – 15. Noah Mooney, 5:05.22.
200 freestyle relay – 8. Noah Maestas, James Galligan, Austin Linn, Jack Krza, 1:32.72.
100 breaststroke – 5. Noah Maestas, 57.96; 10. Justin Linn, 100.95.
400 freestyle relay – 21. Noah Mooney, Louie Roth, Jack Krza, Ben Hoody, 3:40.81.