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Blue Ponies focused on training and competing

Havre High swimmers race in Great Falls, Missoula


January 18, 2018

It’s hard to believe, but the Havre High boys and girls swim teams have just three more chances to test themselves in the pool before the Montana State Swimming Championships next month in Great Falls.

And two of those chances come this weekend. Friday, the Blue Ponies will be back in Great Falls for a meet with Great Falls High and CMR, then Havre will head off to Missoula for the Missoula Invitational Saturday.

The Blue Ponies competed last weekend at the Stacy Frey Memorial in Great Falls, against some of the top competition in the state. And they’ll get the chance to do it again Saturday in Missoula. The likes of Missoula Hellgate and Bozeman High are two of the top Class AA teams, while Class A powers Whitefish and Columbia Falls will also be in attendance.

So as Havre hits the stretch run of its season, the chance to race against top level competition is an important part of the Ponies’ progress.

“I am encouraged by the fact that our girls team beat both Helena teams and Great Falls High School (last week),” HHS head coach Bill Kilgore said. “I am also excited that our swimmers continue to drop time even in the midst of our heaviest training. This tells me that we are working hard and improving our aerobic capacity, but not leading our swimmers into fatigue.”

Havre’s girls team has been strong all season, led by star senior Amelia Miller, who has won multiple races against very good competition. Freshman Kobi Burchard and senior Jessica Otto also continue to stand out, as does Hannah Lunak, Jillian Reighard and Lacey Huseby among others. That group also helps build Havre’s very strong relay teams, which have done well, even at the biggest meets this season.

The Blue Pony boys are also finding their stride in the pool. Sophomore Jacob Miller has been a standout, while senior Aylan Pratt is coming on strong. Paxtin McCann, John Klein, Ammon Lines, Noah Gjesdal, Logan Twombly and Riley Kilgore have also showed promise throughout the season.

And that season is starting to wind down for the Ponies, who wrap up the regular season schedule next weekend in Great Falls. The state meet is under a month away, and Havre isn’t just competing hard on the weekends in order to get ready for state, the Ponies are training hard every day as well.

“Training is such a balancing act, and I'm very pleased where our Blue Pony swimmers are at the moment,” coach Kilgore said. “I look forward to our taper this year where we rest the kids a bit and hopefully get them swimming to the utmost of their abilities at the state meet. I'm anticipating some very fast times.”

Havre will swim in a triangular meet with GFH and CMR Friday at 4 p.m. in Great Falls. The Missoula Invitational will get underway Saturday morning at the Grizzly Pool on the University of Montana campus.


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