BILLINGS — Most years, swimmers from all over the state converge on a single pool for the state swim meet. But like all events this year, adaptations must be made to limit the spread of COVID-19.
So rather than a single meet, Class AA swimmers will compete Friday at Swarthout Field House in Great Falls and Class A-B swimmers will compete Saturday at Mission Valley Aquatics Center in Polson.
Competition has also limited the entries in 2021. AA fields will have just 24 swimmers per event and A-B will have 18.
Rather than having both qualifying heats and finals, competitors will swim one race and the best times will be awarded.
Spectators at both sites are limited to two per athlete, but both events can be streamed on the NFHS Network.
Start Time: 11 a.m.
Location: Swarthout Field House, Great Falls High
2020 champions: Bozeman Hawks (boys and girls)
The Hawks snapped a six-year runner-up streak to Missoula Hellgate last season as they swept both podiums, but this year the team has divided into two high schools between Bozeman and Gallatin.
Returning individual champions: Bremer Deaton (Missoula Sentinel, boys 100 backstroke), Sara Guillen (Bozeman, girls 500 freestyle), Lily Milner (Kalispell Flathead, girls 100 freestyle and girls 100 backstroke) and Ben Woldtvedt (Great Falls, boys 200 freestyle)
Spectator info: Must be one of two pre-approved spectators per athlete. Use the south entrance. Passes include swimmer name and events and serve as spectator's tickets to the pool balcony grandstands during those events. Areas are set up for teams and fans outside the pool area between events. Masks are required by Cascade County.
Start Time: Noon
Location: Mission Valley Aquatics in Polson
2020 champions: Whitefish (boys), Billings Central (girls)
Returning champions: Megan Beers (Billings Central, girls 500 freestyle), Sophi Logue (Bigfork, girls 100 butterfly), Ada Qunell (Whitefish, girls 200 IM)
Spectator info: Limited to two per athlete.