Nov 27, 2013 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorSwimmers range in age from 4 to 54.
Rod Settlemire has the Riverton Swim Club going in the right direction.
When the head coach started, the program had about 20 swimmers. With the support of his board of directors and parents involved in the program, the RSC has now 72 swimmers learning, training and competing. The youngest swimmer registered is 4 years old, and the oldest is 54.
"We have had a lot of absolute growth in the 12- and 13-year-olds," Settlemire said. "We have probably tripled in that age group."
Settlemire would like to see the swim club attract more high school swimmers.
"I'm really hoping to get more high school swimmers in here, because right now we probably have four high school girls and no boys," Settlemire said. "I consider our team the feeder for the entire high school program. I just get a little disappointed that we can't get more."
The swim club is taking registrations for swimmers of all ages and skill levels.
Future swimmers can sign up during practice at 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday at the Riverton Aquatic Center.
"I know that if we keep trying and scoring well, then we will get more swimmers," Settlemire said.
The club has two seasons, with the current one ranging from September to March.
"We let them join all year long," Settlemire said.
The spring/summer season starts in April. The state meet for the season is the second week of July.
"I'm just really happy with the swimming board that we have," Settlemire said. "They are really supportive. They are here for everything. The aquatic center also has given us a lot of support, because we are building the middle school program as well."
Members of the RSC board are Cathy Fisher (president), Shaundi Gopp (vice president), Stacie Muehler (secretary) and Connie Nyberg (treasurer). The parent representative is Jennifer Thomas.
The swim club has three different group practices at the RAC during the week.
The gold group is made up of the elite swimmers. It practices four days a week for an hour and a half.
The silver group swims Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Silver group swimmers "are missing technique and one stroke," Settlemire said. "For the most part they have a good fundamentals of all strokes."
The bronze group is learning either the breaststroke or the butterfly.
"It's an introduction to both strokes," Settlemire said.
The first two months of the season are focused on stroke and technique work.
"After that I start building up endurance and making it easy enough for them to handle their longer swims," Settlemire said.
The state meet is the first weekend in March.
"We will work to taper into that," Settlemire said.
The swim club is focusing on its home meet of the year on Saturday, Dec. 7, and Sunday, Dec. 8. at the RAC.
The meet is called the RIverton Reindeer Dash.
"I expect there to be 150-plus swimmers at the meet," Settlemire said. "We usually always have a good turnout.
"We have one of the best pools in the state. I really like seeing a lot of numbers come into this meet."
Teams will be in Riverton from all over the state.
"Lander will probably bring over about 40 or 50 swimmers," Settlemire said.
Riverton has been in three meets this fall. The club has competed in Laramie, Casper and in Lander.
"We have a lot of potential," Settlemire said. "I don't care how fast they are right now. Speed will come on their own."
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