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South Salt Lake Journal

Cottonwood junior Natty Alonso, senior Adessa Talbot on the verge of big things in 4A swimming

Feb 09, 2024 03:40PM ● By Brian Shaw

Following in the footsteps of legends is never easy. 

Natty Alonso, who is now a junior at Cottonwood and senior Adessa Talbot have often been in the shadows of several great Colts swimmers, most of whom have gone on to even greater things at Division I college programs. 

One, of course, made it as far as the most recent Summer Olympics, where Rhyan White [Alabama Crimson Tide] won a silver medal in Tokyo. 

Alonso and Talbot have had the unenviable task of following White, a rather thankless task for anyone who would dare try to. 

But Alonso has been stepping up her game, one that started a long time ago as an 11 year old on the Wasatch Front Fish Market club team. Like White, Alonso did not start out as the top swimmer on her own club team; she’s had to work hard to get to where she is, now. And still the junior has others on her own high school team to look up to: Talbot, for example, recently committed to Western Colorado. 

Alonso and Talbot could’ve had their pick of high schools but chose Cottonwood in part by what White and others told them about the school and program headed by their longtime club and now high school head coach Ron Lockwood. 

Both Alonso and Talbot are beginning to see these relationships bear fruit. The Cottonwood junior Alonso has already had top-10 finishes across Utah in three races [the 50 free, 100 back and 100 free] and is a favorite to win medals at the upcoming 4A championships in February along with Talbot, who has the 6th-fastest time in Utah in the 100 butterfly and the 15th fastest in the 100 back. 

At that same district event at Skyline in December where both ladies won medals, Alonso earned gold in the 50 freestyle event, silver in the 100 freestyle and 50 backstroke and bronze in the 100 backstroke.  Talbot won silver in the 100-butterfly, captured two relay bronzes and finished in fifth place in the 100-backstroke. 

In Utah high school swimming, Alonso has risen from 99th overall to 16th in just three years. Talbot isn’t far behind her teammate and longtime friend at No. 31, either. 

Over the past nine months on the club level, Alonso has shown she’s capable of racing even faster than her district meet scores have demonstrated. So has Talbot, who like Alonso has also been on the Wasatch Front Fish Market since the age of 11. 

At the recently completed Utah Senior Championship at Utah Tech University November 30- December 2, Alonso was 10th overall yet finished her 50-freestyle race in a time of 24.79 seconds. The Cottonwood junior also touched the finish in a time of 54.96 in the 100 free. 

Alonso wrapped up her action in St. George in early December by finishing in the top 8 in the 100- backstroke in a time of 58.73 seconds. Alonso even swam the 200 free at that meet, finishing that race in 1:59. [Talbot finished fifth in the 200 butterfly, 7th in the 400 IM and 15th in the 100 fly.] 

For Alonso and Talbot, it seems like the lessons they’ve learned over the past seven years from Coach Lockwood and staff have taken root. The Cottonwood junior Alonso appears to be the leader for the Colts—yet is gladly following in the footsteps of Talbot, who will be off to college, soon. 

When White was swimming at Cottonwood and on the WSFF club team, she always had others on the Colts to look up to. 

Now it seems that all eyes will be on Alonso and Talbot the next two months as they look to fill those giant shoes left by Colts legends who have come before them. λ