A meet to remember for the Berthoud swim team at the state championships

By Jordan Schachterle

Photo by Angie Purdy – Berthoud’s Jamie Dellwardt prepares for the 100-yard backstroke event at the Tri-Valley Conference championships. Dellwardt turned in a phenomenal showing at the 3A state championships, winning second place in the 100-yard backstroke and 200-yard IM.

The Surveyor

Berthoud High School had entries for every event going into the 3A Colorado State Championships on Friday, and that in itself was reflective of the successful meet for the Spartans. By the Finals on Saturday, Berthoud was competing in nine events, and each one of them was huge for the swimmers competing.

“We just had four team records broken,” Berthoud head coach Matthew Goldschmidt said, “we went almost 100% personal record and those that did not go PR, they were right around their PR that they had last week. I’m excited for these girls.”

The day started off great in the Spartans’ first race, the 200 Yard Medley Relay. The team made up of Jamie Dellwardt, Arika Beard, Kysa Keck and Marin Kasperbauer swam a personal best time of 1:55.00, an improvement of their 1:56.10 mark set in prelims. The team of four placed in fifth in the state.

Junior Abby Dodd qualified for the B Final in the 50-yard freestyle after her prelim time of 26.60. On Saturday, Dodd finished in 20th with a time of 26.79.

“I feel pretty proud because I know I worked really hard this season, both in practice and at meets,” Dodd said about her state performance, “it was a huge team effort and I’m really proud of my team that swam today.”

Diver Sarah McCormick ran into some troubles during the prelims of the 1-meter diving competition. The senior hit her foot on the board going down on her second prelim dive but decided to continue to compete. McCormick pushed through and punched her ticket to the finals.

Her finals set was great, and she landed a dive that she had flopped just a week earlier. Her finals set of dives got her an 18th place finish.

“It was crazy, after I hit the board I didn’t think that I was going to come back and score almost 40-points on a dive,” the senior said, “now that dive, especially after I smacked it last week and zeroed it out, it’s really special.”

In the 100-yard butterfly, junior Kysa Keck swam a 1:04.80 in prelims, qualifying her for the B Final. Her 1:03.59 finals swim put her in 13th place, a great finish for her to end the season on.

“It’s insane,” Keck said about qualifying for an individual event, “there’s 20, 30 girls on the team and 10 of us make it. It’s really honoring, and it really proves all of your hard work.”

Berthoud’s team for the 200-yard freestyle relay qualified for the B Final, getting a 1:49.32 on Friday. They improved their time to a 1:47.40, finishing in 15th place.

Senior Arika Beard qualified for the B Final in the 100-yard backstroke, finishing with a prelim time of 1:14.11. This was Beard’s final race of her swimming career and she left it all-out in the pool. With a 1:13.62 finished, she earned 12th place, ending her time as Spartan and a swimmer on a high note.

“It’s the best thing that’s ever happened,” Beard said about her final race, “I’ve been swimming for 10 years so it’s a lot to handle and I’ve had this goal since like eighth grade. I wouldn’t trade my team for the world.”

The Spartans’ highest placings came in the third and 10th races of the day, all of which junior Jamie Dellwardt was swimming solo.

Dellwardt made her way to the starting blocks to compete in the 200 Yard IM. In prelims, Dellwardt swam a 2:15.10, good enough to get her into the A Finals, but she needed more to get the podium finish she wanted. Knocking nearly four seconds off her prelim time, she swam the 200 yards in 2:11.44, giving her exactly what she wanted. Dellwardt finished in second place, taking home her first silver.

The junior was seeded fourth in the 100-yard backstroke after qualifying for the A Final with her prelim time of 59.76. Once again, the time was good, but not good enough for Dellwardt. With an improved time of 58.41, Dellwardt finished in second, bringing home another silver medal.

The last event of the day was an emotional one for the four diving into the pool, and for the entire team standing by. Berthoud’s 400-yard freestyle relay team qualified for the A Final after a prelim time of 3:56.23.

“I feel amazing and so supported by my team,” Dellwardt said, “they knew I could do it and they inspired me to be able to do it as well. I feel so amazing after being able to show what I could do.”

Dodd, Hannah Roberts, Kasperbauer and Dellwardt walked hand-in-hand around the pool and made their way to the starting blocks for the final race of the day, and the final race for Roberts, the relay team’s lone senior. The relay had been a complicated one throughout the season and never seemed to work out right for the Spartans; that was until the final time it was done.

The team swam a team record 1:13.62 and finished the race in ninth place. Following the finish, it was a scene of celebration from every Spartan swimmer, coach and fan. They were not only celebrating the extremely successful day in the water, but the careers of the five seniors who competed for their last time.

“It is amazing, I’m going to remember that race for the rest of my life,” Roberts said, “it was just amazing being with my team, it was once in a lifetime.”

The underclassmen members of the team expressed their gratitude toward the seniors and the seniors reminisced on their time as a Berthoud Spartan.

“Being a part of this team with these girls has been one of the best experiences of my entire life,” Kasperbauer, a sophomore, said, “I absolutely love the girls on this team. The seniors are going to be so missed and I just look up to them so much, they’ve taught me so much.”

It was an emotional, but celebratory day for the Berthoud swim team at the 3A Colorado State Championships. A day full of success, final races, a couple silver medals, and it was a day that every Spartan will remember.