Jets, Lightning shine at SnowFest swim meet

Record numbers of competitors travelled to Kelowna last weekend to compete in the 37th annual Kelowna AquaJets Snowfest Invitational.

Three-hundred thirty-two swimmers from 12 teams in B.C. and Washington took part in the two-day meet at the H2O Centre.

"The energy was very positive inside the building," said Jets' head coach Peter Wilkins “Every year the meet continues to grow and get more competitive, it is terrific to watch”.

The AquaJets had 58 swimmers of their own racing over the three days, and finished second place in team scoring behind Kamloops with 2,139 points. Wilkins says

The Jets broke three clubs record, all of them on girls relays. The 11-12 team of Axana Merckx, Megan Elkin, Molly Hill and Taylor Desrosier broke two records in the 4x50 Free and 4x50 Medley relays, while the 15 & over girls Katie Dunlop, Skye Kinnear, Tia Itterman and Kiana McNulty lowered the mark in the 4x50 Medley relay in a time of 2:11.0.

Highlighting the weekend were four Jets swimming new qualifying standards for provincials: Madison Kornell made her second AAA cut in the 100 Back, earning a spot on the team to compete in Kamloops in two weeks. Paige Foster (100 Back, 200 Breast), Kaelyn Willms (50 Free, 200 Breast), Ella Rolleston (50 Free, 100 Fly) all swam their way to AA provincials in Chilliwack next month.

Six Jets won in finals: Josh Zakala (50 Back, 100 Breast, 100 Fly, 200 Breast), Tia Itterman (400 Free, 400 IM), Max McDonald (50 Breast, 100 Free), Sam McDonald (50 Breast, 200 IM), Axana Merckx (50 Back) and Katie Dunlop (100 Back). Finishing in second: Dunlop (50,100,200 Free, 200 IM), Itterman (50 Free, 200 Im) Zakala (50,100 Free), Max McDonald (100, 200 Breast) Sam  McDonald (1500 Free, 200 Breast), Emily Epp (100,200 Breast, 400 Free), Clarisse Obedkoff (200 Fly, 400 IM), Kyra McNulty (50 Back, 100 Back), Kaelyn Willms (200 Breast), Madison Kornell (100 Back). Placing in third: Merckx (400 Free, 200 Fly, 50 Breast), Zakala (50, 200 Fly, 50 Breast), Max McDonald (200 Free, 200 Back), Anna Sorenson (800 Free) and Skye Kinnear (200 IM). Achieving 100% Best times on the weekend: Kitana Bright, Madison Comeau, Olivia and Sarah Courtenay, Taigan Cunningham, Chloe Dalgarno, Taylor Desrosier, Morgan and Paige Foster, Olivia Huska, Max McDonald, Axana Merckx, Montana Nichols, Kaylin Scuka and Kaelyn Willms.

Liquid Lightning

The Liquid Lightning Swim Club got back into the swim of things after the Christmas break by posting 171 personal best times and 15 club records at the Kelowna AquaJet's SnowFest meet at the H2O pool Jan. 17 to 19. The Lightning took 19 first, 20 second and 18 third place finishes

Brock Hoel, 12, swam all best times. He qualified for the upcoming provincial AAA short course championships in Kamloops Jan. 31 to Feb. 3 with a 1:04.38 in the 100 metre freestyle final and a 3:02.13 in the 200 breaststroke final, good for third place. Brock also won the 100 breast and placed third in the 400-m individual medley. He set a club record in the 1500 free.

Chantelle Douglas backstroked her way to the AAAs with a 2:31.58 in the 200 back final, good for second place, and a 1:08.94 in the 100 back final good for third place.

Lacey Falkingham, 17, swam to a second-place 2:29.00 in the 200 butterfly final to punch her ticket to the Western championships in New Westminister Feb. 13 to 16. Falkingham also placed second in the 100 fly, 100 breast and 200 breast.

Kaitlyn Luchka, 11, won the 200 breast with a AA-qualifying time of 3:31.96. She came third in the 100 breast.

Megan Allan, 11, swam to 100 per cent personal best times including a new AA qualifier in the 50 free.

Craig Mathieson, 15, set a club record and won the 200 backstroke. Mathieson finished third in the 100 back, breaking Mike Crone’s club record from 2003 with a 1:04.15. He swam to silver in the 100 breast with a 1:09.68, torching Cayce Horn’s record from 2004. Mathieson also set new records in the 50 back and 100 fly.

Scott Andreen, 17, took over 45 second off his 1500 free to win the event with a club record 14.49.13, breaking Matt Brown’s mark from 2007. He also set a club record in the 200 I.M.

David Dimitrov, 22, won the 200 breast, 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 fly, 100 free and 100 breast. He set club records in the 400 I.M. and the 200 breast.

Jamie Hellard, 14, won the 50 breast with a 35.21, breaking Makayla Skrlac’s club record from 2011.

Alex Diaz, 15, won the 200 free and came second in the 400 free and the 100 free with a club record. He broke his own club record in the 100 fly.

Pierson Piche, 9, swam to 100 per cent best times and set club records in the 100 back and 200 back.

Rohan Jacobs won the 50 fly and 50 back.

In the girls 16 and over division, Lauren Fauchon, 17, won the 50 back. Danielle Douglas won the 100 back. Kate Aguiar won the 200 back with a personal best.

In the girls 14 and 15 division, Jessica Forbes took the 50 back and 50 free.

Angelina Barkley, Kayne Bellinger, Janae Hoel, Hanna Grover, Enrica Guidi, Cassidy Lawrence, Jessica Mcdiarmid, Samantha Pringle, Taylor Smith, Alexandra Strobel, Madison Wudrich, Georgia Pengilly, Ryan Scott and Paighton Senger swam to 100 per cent best times at the meet.

Several swimmers took large amounts of time off their events, including Emma Andreen, who took 11 seconds off her 100 fly. Shelbi Jardine took over 14 seconds off her 200 back. Kyra Rice took over nine seconds off her 50 fly. Sara Roggeveen took over 24 seconds off her 200 breast.

“Outstanding performance by the younger Lightning,” said Emil Dimitrov, head coach for the Lightning.




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