Swimmers find success at ‘Last Chance’

Robert Galbreath photo Next stop – State! Six athletes will represent Sublette County at the Boys’ State Swimming and Diving Championships in Gillette on Feb. 16-17. Pictured, from left, are Ryen Hacklin, John Ruby, Andy DeClue, Dillon Boespflug, Owen Nielson and Kaden Day.

Boespflug breaks Pinedale record

PINEDALE – The Sublette County combined boys’ swim team wrapped up the 2022-2023 regular season at the “Last Chance” Meet in the Pinedale Aquatic Center on Thursday, Feb. 10.

Next up is the 3A Boys State Swimming and Diving Championships in Gillette on Feb. 16-17. Six athletes from Sublette County qualified to compete at State this year – senior Dillon Boespflug, senior Owen Nielson, juniors Andy DeClue, Ryen Hacklin and John Ruby and freshman Kaden Day.

Boespflug shattered a 25-year old Pinedale swim-team record in the 100-meter breaststroke in front of the home crowd on Thursday. Earning gold in the event, Boespflug posted a record-breaking time of 1 minute, 13.48 seconds.

“Congratulations to Dillon for breaking the breaststroke record,” said Co-Head Coach Kursty Day.

Boespflug also captured first place in the 100-butterfly on Thursday, hitting the finish line at 1:08.59, more than 13.5 seconds ahead of the competition from Kemmerer.

Timing in at under 1 minute in the 100-freestyle, Nielson bagged gold in the event at 59.69 seconds. Nielson beat the second-place finisher from Kemmerer by 2.5 seconds. Nielson snagged silver in the 50-freestyle with a time of 27.13 seconds.

DeClue obtained gold in the 400-freestyle, timing the long-distance event in at 5:03.01. He placed third in the 50-freestyle at 28.18 seconds.

Ruby secured second place in the 400-freestyle, finishing the event in 5:15.11.

Hacklin picked up bronze in the 100-freestyle with a time of 1:03.73. Senior Sage Mahaffey came in third place in the 400-freestyle, posting a time of 5:26.92. Day took third place in the 200-individual medley at 2:51.17.

Relay highlights included a gold for Hacklin, DeClue, Nielson and Boespflug in the 400-freestyle relay. The team clocked in at 4:10.93, more than 18 seconds faster than the runner-up from Kemmerer. Hitting the finish line at 2:06.86, DeClue, Boespflug, Nielson and Hacklin placed second in the 200-medley relay.

The 200-freestyle relay team – sophomore Calleb Willson, freshman Scotty Ring, Ruby and sophomore Reuben Allen – earned second place at 2:23.13.

“This meet is always hard,” wrote Coach Day. “There are always a lot of emotions. I am very proud of all our swimmers and wish they could all go to State. Scotty Ring, Reuben Allen, Wyatt Hyde, Sage Mahaffey and Calleb Willson have all made great strides to improve their individual events. We saw a lot of time drops from these boys, and I’m sure they will continue to grow stronger and be ready for next season. We will be taking six athletes to State and look forward to seeing what they can accomplish.”

Additional results

  • 200-medley relay: Ring, Allen, Ruby and Logan Visser in fourth place at 2:39.82.
  • 50-freestyle: Hacklin in sixth place at 28.77, Mahaffey in seventh at 29.23, Ruby in ninth at 30.04, Willson in 10th at 30.81, Wyatt Hyde in 12th at 31.72, Allen in 14th at 39.17 and Visser in 15th at 41.56.
  • 100-freestyle: Willson in fourth place at 1:10.65, Ring in seventh at 1:13.30 and Visser in ninth at 1:45.22.
  • 400-freestyle: Hyde in fifth place at 6:53.73.
  • 100-backstroke: Day in fourth place at 1:19.78 and Ring in fifth place at 1:21.32.
  • 400-freestyle relay: Willson, Day, Mahaffey and Visser in fourth place at 4:54.10.