The Williams Lake Blue Fins Swim Club was up against some of the toughest swimmers in the province during the weekend at the ‘AA’ Provincial Championships in Chilliwack.
While head coach Chad Webb wasn’t expecting amazing results due to the team being out of the water for the past two weeks and travelling back and forth to Quesnel to train when they had time, he said the results were much better than he’d anticipated.
The Blue Fins’ girls relay teams kicked off the meet with two club records in the 11- and 12-year-old girls free relay and the 13- and 14-year-old girls relay.
In the 11- and 12-year-old race the team finished in seventh place, while the 13- and 14-year-old girls finished in an impressive 10th spot with two younger swimmers.
The teams turned around the next night to both finish in eighth place and, again, break two more club records.
The team consisted of Taylor Fitzgerald, Keanna Saunders, Isabelle Knox, Cristelle Panida, Abby Webb and Gabrielle Knox.
Panida and Fitzgerald both swam up to a higher age group for the 13- and 14-year-old team.
Chad noted Andrew Haseldine had a break out meet for the Blue Fins with top-five finishes in almost every event he swam.
Haseldine picked up a gold medal in both the 100-metre and 200-metre butterfly, claimed silver medals in the 100-metre freestyle and 200-metre backstroke and won a bronze medal in the 200-metre individual medley.
With his performances, Haseldine has qualified in almost every swim for the upcoming ‘AAA’ Provincial Championships in two weeks in Victoria.
Panida, meanwhile, also cleaned up in her races and qualified for ‘AAAs’ alongside Haseldine.
Panida swam to gold medals in the 200-metre and 400-metre individual medley, crushing her competition in the 400-metre individual medley by more than seven seconds, and picked up a bronze medal in the 100-metre butterfly.
Fitzgerald also had a strong meet finishing with silver medals in both the 100-metre and 200-metre backstroke.
Keanna Saunders grabbed an eight-place result in the 100-metre backstroke and had a few second swims in the ‘B’ final, while Kara Zavitz finished just outside the medals in the 200-metre backstroke and with a fourth-place finish and qualified for a few ‘B’ finals.
Abby raced to second-swim ‘B’ finals for 200-metre butterfly, and Isabelle, Gabrielle and Morgan Langford all had some solid performances and best times over the weekend, Chad said.
Overall, the Blue Fins placed 15th out of more than 35 teams at the meet.