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It’s not even 40 degrees outside on a weekday afternoon in Albuquerque, but not too cold for Hope Christian’s Reese Hinnerichs.

“I definitely think it’s something you have to get used to,” said the senior.  “No matter what, you’re going to walk out here and it’s going to be cold, so you just have to get in and go.  There’s no waiting around on deck.”

“The water is really warm once you get in,” she joked.

That’s what state champions do.  Regardless of the temperature, Reese is putting in about 7,000 yards a day.  It’s paid off.  Last year at state, she finished first in the 200- and 500-yard freestyle events and swam the anchor leg on her team’s winning 200-yard freestyle relay.  She started swimming around the age of 6. “Both my parents swam Division One in college,” Reese explained.  “They wanted us to be water safe, but they weren’t going to force it on me do club swimming or anything.  I remember telling them when I was ten that I did want to swim in college.  It was a joke then, I never thought it was going to happen because I was playing other sports and doing other things.  In 8th grade, I joined Lobo Aquatic Club and that’s when the dream came to life, that it was within reach to go and swim collegiately somewhere.”

That somewhere is on the east coast.  Reese committed to Florida State and will swim with the Seminoles next season. “Oh my gosh, it’s an ACC school, Division One, it’s the dream,” she said.

As for the state meet, Reese hasn’t decided on all her events, but she will swim in the 200-yard individual medley. “The mindset going in is I’d love to be under 2:04,” Reese said.  “2:00 is the goal right now, but if that doesn’t happen, I have more meets coming up.  It’s going to be, ‘Get up, put on a suit, and put on a great show.’”

The show is February 17th and 18th in Albuquerque.

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