Columbia Success

Patrick Norman

Twenty-three AAAA swimmers competed at the University of Missouri this past weekend at the Annual Tiger Invite. This marked the last meet before Championship season and our group was on point in their races. 


We had numerous event winners throughout the weekend. Ella Marsh took first overall in three races, 11-12 Girls 200 Breast, 100 Breast and 100 Fly. She took top 3 in all her races during the weekend. Karsyn Ward took top place in the 11-12 Girls 200 Back. Senior Halle McCullough placed first in the Open 100 and 200 Breaststroke races. Senior Bradie Ward was first in the Open 400 IM and the 200 Backstroke. Rebecca Pickert rounded out the AAAA trifecta in the Open 200-yard stroke races by winning the 200 Fly. All these swimmers had several top three finishes as well. Other AAAA racers with top 3 finishes at the meet included Lucy Velte, Avery Walz and Mateo Sherwood.


Our relays shined as AAAA Open Girls took 1st and 3rd place in both the 200 Free and 200 Medley Relays. Our 11-12 Girls relays finished 3rd ,200 Free Relay, and 2nd, 200 Medley Relay. 


We had 3 new Sectional Qualifiers over this past weekend. Molly Nuckolls (200 Fly), Jocelyn Wilson (100 Back) and Tauren Walz (400 IM, 100 Breast, 100 Fly, 200 Fly) achieved their first ever 2023 Sectional cuts. Lucy Velte achieved a new cut in the 500 Freestyle. Avery Walz achieved a new cut in the 200 Freestyle.


Karsyn Ward (200 Back, 200 Free) and Ella Marsh (200 back, 100 Breast) both achieved new NCSA Age Group cuts. Many other swimmers swam to new personal best (74 in total), season bests, Champs cuts and District cuts over the weekend. 


There was lots of cheering, encouraging, hugs and high fives over the weekend. It was awesome to watch. Theo Neuman (age 6) swam in his first ever swim meet and completed both of his event legally. Rebecca Pickert was the first AAAA swimmer to complete her 500 Freestyle (the last event) but the last to leave the deck counting for teammates in the second to last heat of boys 500 Freestyles. And finally, our crash area was spotless as each swimmer made sure to clean the area before leaving. How you do anything is how you do everything. Well done Ad Astra! 

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