Republic swimmers mark program milestones, including conference champions

The Republic girls swim team marked two big milestones last week. First, Karissa Metzger and Mady McCrea won individual events at the Central Ozark Conference championship meet in Springfield, becoming the first Republic conference champions in girls swim. Later in the week, Metzger followed it up by qualifying for state competition.
Metzger became the first Republic swimmer – boy or girl – to qualify for state with a career-best time in the 100-yard breaststroke at the Springfield Invite Saturday. She finished second out of nearly 80 swimmers in the event. Two Republic boys had qualified for the state diving competition in the fall.
At the COC meet, Metzger finished with more than a three-second advantage over runner-up Ellie Jett of Nixa in the 200-yard freestyle. She bettered her previous personal record by nearly seven seconds, finishing in 2:04.16. She had been seeded sixth going into the race, but Metzger said she’s not surprised by her recent success.
Coach Steve [Boyce] has pushed us really hard the past couple weeks, and I just knew I’d be able to drop a lot of time, so I just kept pushing in the water, even when it hurt,” Metzger said. “When I hit the wall and I saw my time, I was shocked. I knew I could do that – I just didn’t know it was that fast.”
McCrea won the COC title in the 200-yard individual medley despite being seeded fourth. She improved on her previous best time by nearly four seconds. McCrea said she had one competitor hanging with her during the first 50 yards of the race.
“In my first 50 fly, this girl was right next to me in the lane over, and we were going neck and neck. Then I kind of pulled away on the backstroke. When I got to breaststroke and freestyle, it was just kind of me on my own. At that point, I was just racing the clock,” she said.


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