ELKART, Indiana. – The perfect ending.
Kristina Friedrichswas poised to leave her legacy at the Colorado State Women’s Swimming and Diving Championship with four top-three finishes in program history and 10 finishes at Mountain West, added one final cachet to her career .
In the final run of his college career, Friedrichs hit the court at the national invitational championships in the 100-yard freestyle on Saturday at Elkhart Health & Aquatics. Friedrichs won the race in 49.55, after qualifying seventh in the preliminaries.
“It was definitely exciting, very surreal,” Friedrichs said. “I was just trying to enjoy every moment of it. It was really great, because my morning swim…it was a good morning swim, but I was ranked seventh, so coming back from lane 2, a kind of outdoor smoke was really exciting.”
Friedrichs and freshman Maya White took part in the three-day competition, covering four races each. Friedrichs placed in the top six of her four, taking fourth in the 50 freestyle and sixth in the 50 and 100 butterfly. She swam personal bests in both butterfly events, with the 100 time of 53.07 bolstering her second place finish in the program.
For the head coach Christopher Woodardthe meeting served several purposes for both of them, as well as the program.
“I think there are three reasons. Let a senior who is having a hot year have a chance to win,” Woodard said. “You have a freshman who had a great first half, hopefully bounce back and gain experience and get his juices flowing for the playoffs going forward. And I hope you send a message to the rest of the team, that this is an expectation – this is where we are meant to be.”
White spent the second half of the season battling illness, which is never ideal for a distance swimmer. She finished 23rd in the 400 m individual medley and 34and in the 500 freestyle but came back with a pair of top-eight results on Saturday, needing just one race to get there.
Her opening 1,000 yards in the 1,650 freestyle counted, she placed sixth and eighth in the mile itself. His week left the same impression on Friedrichs as his opening season – impressed.
“I think Maya is one of the hardest working people on the team that I know, and she has earned her place in this competition,” Friedrichs said. “Coming back like she did after being sick in January shows how resilient she is. I feel like she’s taken every opportunity this year, this week included, to have a positive attitude after all of her races. It was inspiring for me to see what she is capable of as a freshman who is at the start of the next three years for her.”
No medals were awarded during the encounter, and instead of collecting another encounter t-shirt, the CSU duo came up with something more fun – a t-shirt from The Chubby Trout, a seafood restaurant. sea in front of the meeting.
It’s sure to be a reminder of fond memories, and Friedrichs created the perfect exclamation for another three days of fun with a teammate and her coaches.
After a successful career, Woodard sends Friedrichs alone for the last time.
“I told her it was a storybook. She came up to me and I said, ‘I’m not training you tonight,'” he said. “I’ve been telling you what to do for three and a half years, so this one’s for you. You tell me what you’re gonna do.
“She said I’m going to send it completely. I’m going to do everything and see if I can hold on.”
Which she did, then walked off the deck one last time as champion.
ACSCA National Invitational Championships
Colorado State Results
6. 50 butterfly, 24.11
4. 50 freestyle, 22.81
6. 100 butterfly, 53.07
1. 100 free, 49.55
34. 500 free, 5:00.48
23. 400 IM, 4:26.59
6. 1000 free, 10:05.70
8. 1650 freestyle, 16:44.99