Lance Godard spent the past six weeks swimming 3,000 yards per day while training for a regional zone championship meet. Godard, a 10-year-old from Lee’s Summit, considers that the easy part of his training.
By SAM McDOWELL
The Kansas City Star
The hardest part? Sacrificing ice cream to stay in top swimming shape.
In the end, though, it was worth it.
Godard won three events over the weekend in the Missouri Valley Central Zone Age Group Championships, one of four regional zones in USA Swimming. He won the 50-meter butterfly, 200 freestyle and 100 backstroke, and he also finished second in the 100 freestyle, 200 individual medley and 100 butterfly.
Not a bad weekend. His point totals from the six races led to a second-place finish in the overall competition for the boys 10-and-under age group.
“He had a goal in mind and he put his mind to it and did it,” said Carmen Menges, Godard’s coach for the Kansas City Blazers. “It was phenomenal to watch his commitment for a 10-year-old kid.”
Godard had no problem finding a way to celebrate.
“I had some ice cream (Sunday) night,” he said. “Orange Leaf, my favorite.”
Other area swimmers also enjoyed success in the zone championships.
Jordan Portela, 14, placed in the top-four in four events. Portela, who trains with the Lawrence Aquahawks, won the 100 freestyle, placed second in the 200 freestyle, third in the 100 butterfly and fourth in the 50 freestyle.
It was an equally satisfying weekend for Collin Nill, 14, a member of Tsunami Swim Team of Kansas City. He won the day’s longest race, the 1,500 freestyle, and also took third in the 800 freestyle and 100 backstroke before placing fourth in the 400 freestyle.
Other area top-five individual finishes included Caile Grunhard (fourth, 200 individual medley), Evan Holt (third, 400 freestyle), Spencer Steward (fourth, 200 breastroke), Caleb Musser (fourth, 100 butterfly) and Josh Florence (fifth, 200 freestyle).
A team of Godard, Hunter Rey, Kevin Glenn and Daniel Worth won the 200 medley relay.