This weekend’s state meet is only the first of three big meets in three consecutive weekends for many club swimmers such as Snider, the Boyle County senior who is one of the highest-seeded local athletes who qualified.
It will be followed by a U.S. Swimming sectional meet, then by the USS state “A” meet a week later,
The gravity of each meet and the level of competition makes it a grueling stretch, but Snider said it’s also fun.
“They’re important meets, and I look forward to them,” he said. “It’s near the end of the season, so we get a pretty good break afterward, too.”
Snider hopes to be at his best for the state meet this weekend in Louisville. He has been hampered by an injury to his right shoulder in recent weeks, but he was strong enough to repeat as 3rd Region champion in both the 50- and 100-yard freestyle.
“It didn’t hurt the day of regionals. It’s getting better,” he said.
He broke school records in both events at that meet two weekends ago, and he also won the regional sportsmanship award.
“That meant a lot. I’ve been trying to get those (records) for a while now, and I’m just glad I got them,” he said. “I was pretty happy. I dropped a lot of time.”
Snider is seeded fifth in both of his events at the state meet, and he said he’s hoping to finish at least that well.
“I’m just trying to beat my last time and trying to place pretty good, trying to move up a couple spots in the rankings,” he said.
He said he looks forward to seeing friends from other schools that he had made through swimming — “I know a lot of people there” — but he also has to prepare a bit differently than he would for a more ordinary meet.
“I taper and rest a little more to get ready for it,” he said.
Boyle swimmers qualified for state in nine events, and Danville swimmers qualified in four events. Five of the 13 total entries are relay teams, three from Boyle and two from Danville.
This is the fifth trip to state for Snider, who swam only as part of a relay team in his first appearance as an eighth-grader and said the meet looked a little different to him then.
“I’m kind of getting used to it,” he said.
Area swimmers entered in the State Swimming & Diving Meet at Ralph Wright Natatorium in Louisville, listed by seed out of 32 entries in each event and with their regional times (relay lineups subject to change):