Santa Fe High senior Cheyenne Garcia places sixth in 100 breaststroke at state championships at Albuquerque Academy Natatorium
Second year on the podium for Garcia and St. Michael's senior divers Alexis Gallegos and Amaia Bracamontes
By ARNIE LESHIN
Her sixth-place finish this time in the 100-yard breaststroke was as near to her third place turned in last year.
Regardless, Santa Fe High senior Cheyenne Garcia stepped onto the podium for a second-straight time at the past weekend' state swimming-diving championships at the Albuquerque Academy Natatorium.
Not bad for a student-athlete who concluded two years with the Demonettes and now looks ahead to perhaps doing the same in college.
Last year, she came in third in the event in 1:07.53. It was a fast race in which the winner, Lauren Burckel of Albuquerque Eldorado, winning in a pool and state-record time of 1:03.25, with Anita Sumali of Albuquerque La Cueva second in 1:04.92.
Next came Garcia in 1:07.53. This time, she finished in 1:07.86 with laps of 32.03 and 35.77. It was a sixth place, but those ahead of her were timed in 1:06.89. 1:07.22, and 1:07.42, so she was quite close to placing higher in what was a tight finish.
After qualifying in four individual events at state last year, this time she also qualified for the 100 individual medley, but came in 20th in the Friday preliminaries (2:22.11) and did not make it to the finals. She timed 30.88 in her opening lap.
Burckel won this time in 1:03.74 and second was Sumali in 1:04.91.
St. Michael's seniors Alexis Gallegos and Amaia Bracamontes also did well by placing 8th and 11th, respectively, in the 1-meter diver. Gallegos put together a score of 306.70 and Bracamontes had a 291.95 total. It was the second year in a row that the two made it to state.
Others who qualified for state were St. Michael's junior Jacqueline Hay, Demomettes' sophomore Arrika Duran, and Santa Fe Prep sophomore Arielle Nathan, but none made it to the final round.
In the prelims, Hay finished 21st in the 100 backstroke (1:05.22), Duran 17th in the 500 freestyle, and Nathan 21st in the 200 individual medley. Duran missed advancing by 2 seconds and raced 31.24 in her opening lap.