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Bixby Swimmers Among the Best in Oklahoma

By MIKE MOGUIN
Sports Writer

IMPRESSIVE TEAM: Swimmers from Bixby’s girls are, from left, Kayley Henderson, Micah Neasby, Kendall Stieben, Anne Biddick, Ashley Riggenbach, Chloe Kinkaid and Rachel Brown. Biddick is a senior. The other girls are freshmen. They have impacted the Lady Spartans at swim meets so far this year.



Bixby’s girls are ranked No. 8 in the state swimming poll, and if there were a poll for the east side, they would be third behind Jenks and Union.

A group of freshman has served as a thrust for the Lady Spartans, having already won competitions while setting records in the process. Plus, Bixby is represented with experience from the upper classes on the roster.

Freshman girls on the roster are Kayley Henderson, Rachel Brown, Chloe Kincaid, Micah Neasby, Ashley Riggenbach and Kendall Stieben.

Also on the team are sophomores Kinsey Brown, Dain Harper, Mila Stephan, Isabella Rabara, junior Hope Dunn, along with seniors Anne Biddick, Madison Gipson and Emma Shortess.

“They’re hard workers,” Bixby swimming coach Christa Thompson says. “And when they have a bad race, not as far as losing, but when they don’t drop (break) time, they don’t get angry about it, they just self-evaluate and see what they’ve done right and wrong in the race.”

As of Jan. 20, Bixby’s best moments came when it hosted its own meet on Jan. 5, which it won, and the Frontier Conference meet Jan. 13 in Jenks.

Henderson broke team records in the 100-meter backstroke, her lowest time being recorded at 1:08.07. Spartan supporters believe that her fastest time is yet to come.

Other records Henderson broke came with Gipson, Kinsey Brown and Stieben, as they teamed up to set the school record in the 200-meter individual medley relay with a time of 2:13.89. The quartet would go on to set another school record in the 400-meter relay, finishing with a time of 4:25.56, at the Frontier Conference Meet, Jan. 13 in Jenks. The Lady Spartans won against the host Trojans. Bixby also beat Union, Broken Arrow, Owasso and Bishop Kelley in that meet.

Other highlights from Bixby’s meet a week earlier consisted of school records being set by Stieben, who finished with a time of 28.42 in the 50-meter freestyle and 1:09.29 in the 100-meter butterfly.

The Bixby girls have placed first in every meet they have been in this season except for their opener in the All-State Preview back in early November in Jenks.

The Lady Spartans competed in swim meets in Jenks and Bartlesville in late January, which they hoped to be preparations for regional and state meets this month.

“Regionals and state will be the ones that will be the hardest,” Thompson says. “But I’m excited for them. I think we will place well.

“Bartlesville is just that strong all around,” Thompson says. “And since they are not that close to Tulsa, they have every swimmer that swims in clubs and swims for high school. There are four different swim clubs in the Tulsa area, and they all swim for different high schools, so we have to share them around here. Bartlesville has their own, and the guy who coaches high school also coaches club. So, it’s a good situation for them there. Bartlesville is going to be hard to beat.

“The girls at Broken Arrow and Jenks are also pretty good. They have depth,” Thompson says. “I think we all have depth with our teams.”

Updated 02-03-2017

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