Discovery Canyon coach Dave Burgess shakes hands with the Cheyenne Mountain team Saturday, May 19, 2018, during the Class 4A Colorado State Swimming Championships at Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. (The Gazette, Christian Murdock)

Discovery Canyon coach Dave Burgess shakes hands with the Cheyenne Mountain team May 19, 2018, during the Class 4A Colorado state swimming championships at Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.

Discovery Canyon swim coach Dave Burgess doesn’t shy away from passing credit to various club coaches for his continued success leading the Thunder swim and dive program.

“We are so fortunate in Colorado Springs to have so many USA Swimming clubs,” Burgess said. “I joke with people that my job is to not send them back to the club team slower. I’m fortunate that I get these guys at the beginning of the season and 90% are ready to race.”

For the second season in a row the DCC team came tantalizingly close to winning a 4A state championship, but fell short due to a rule infraction, leading to race disqualifications.

But fortunately for the Thunder, the team is ready to reload, despite losing six seniors.

“We are losing some seniors who were very strong at the state meet, and that will make it tougher, especially on the relays,” Burgess said. “But word is we have a strong freshman influx that could make things very interesting.”

The potential addition of more freshman talent is again credited to the various clubs in the area, and Burgess said he hopes that in the future, more talented freshmen will choose to join the Discovery Canyon swim program due to their success statewide.

But while Burgess said he does not do the heavy lifting to get his athletes competition ready, he applauded one coach who did it for nearly half a century.

“Bob Bell of Coronado is retiring after 45-plus years of coaching, he is a gentleman and a joy to be around and has just been a legend in the Colorado Springs community,” Burgess said. “It was a pleasure to watch him coach and to have met and learned from him.”

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