ST CHARLES, Mo. — Looking for the perfect high school swimmer? Autumn Looney's swimming resume looks like a page ripped out of a callsheet from Central Casting.
- USA Swimming All-American
- USA Academic All-American
- USA Winter Junior Nationals Qualifier
- Wendy's Heisman Winner
- 2 event MSHSAA State Champion 2018 (50-yard freestyle, 100-yard butterfly)
- 1 event Class 1 MSHSAA Record Holder 2018 (100 fly)
- 2018 Missouri Coaches Association Swimmer of the Year
- 3 event GAC (Gateway Athletic Conference) North Central Division record holder (50 free, 100 free, 100 fly)
- 2 event GAC Record holder (100 free, 100 fly)
- 6 event GAC Champion
- 6 event State Finalist
- 4.1 GPA
Autumn has been swimming since she was three-years-old.
She's a "natural." Everyone knows it. And she's proven her ability, even more, these last three and a half years while at St. Charles High School, racking up the accolades that few have ever seen.
“I have really good starts," smiled Autumn. “If you watch, I push off the blocks a little bit harder than everyone else.”
But aside from her skill, she's also ambitious, training relentlessly year-round.
“Occasionally we’ll have a practice on Sunday but I pretty much practice every day for two and a half hours," the senior said.
But to Autumn, who will swim for the University of Kansas in the fall, her sights are already set on a goal as large as they come.
“I know this is every kid’s dream, but I want to make it to the Olympics," she said. "And I think the way I’m going and if I stay determined I can definitely make it there. No one is going to tell me no. I can make it there.”
Martha Flentge has been the team's swimming and diving coach for more than a decade.
“Autumn is amazing and I just got to go along for the ride for the last four years," said Flentge.
“She’s like a superstar. And she’s just a born natural. She really is. And she’s a good leader for the team. The girls really look up to Autumn," she said.
They'll look up to her even more if she wins next weekend (Feb. 15-16) at the MSHSAA State finals in St. Peters. Autumn has a real shot at hitting the podium in all four of her swimming events.
But Autumn likes to remind everyone that her teammates, people, come first.
“No matter how good you get you have to have a good attitude," said Autumn.
“ Yes, I’m a good swimmer but I’m known for being kind and respectful. And I respect any athlete.”