A new competitive swim season kicks off for South Western Aquatics in Tillsonburg and Woodstock in September.
As they say on their website, ‘If you can swim, they’ll teach you to race.’
And racing is what they did in the long course regionals last season. South Western Aquatics swam well at the WOSA Long Course Regionals, June 22-23, in Hamilton, their final meet of the 2013 spring-summer season.
“Good,” nodded 10-year-old Samantha Drescher, summing up the Regional race experience for herself and SWA teammates Hailey Granger, 12, Danielle Drescher, 12, and Erica Klosler, 11.
“I think I had one (best time)… I think… I can’t remember,” said Samantha, who swam in eight events plus relay in her third year at Regionals, and took time off her 100m free, 200m free, and 21 seconds off her 400m free.
No surprise, Samantha said her best stroke is freestyle, and her best Regional results – two 5ths and a 6th – were all in freestyle, a stroke she improved over the 2012-13 season.
“I think I got better with the kicking.”
Granger played Top 5 in seven of eight events, and was ‘on the podium’ for medals in 400m free (third), 200m fly (first), and 800m free (third).
Her six best times came across the board in 100m free, 100m fly, 400m free, 200m fly, 50m fly, and 800m free.
“The 200m fly time (2:44.22) is a national time,” Granger noted she had one of the best 200m fly times in the country in her age group. “You have to get three national times to swim at (Age Group) Nationals.
“I’m not too far off in 100m fly.”
But there is no 400m fly, they said.
“No, that would kill somebody,” laughed Danielle Drescher.
To reach Age Group Nationals, Granger will need to excel in a different stroke.
“That’s one of my goals. Nationals would be… good. When you’re 13, you can either make Festival or Provincials, and that’s obviously another goal – I want to try to make Provincials this year.”
At 12 years of age this past season, her only option was Festival.
“My best is 200 fly, but my other swims I’m okay at are 100 fly, 50 fly, 200 free…”
Her shot at nationals chance might be adding the shorter ‘sprint’ fly times – 50m and 100m – which like most events this past season she improved.
“At the beginning of the season, in 200m fly, I was at like 3:16 – that was the time I got at Regionals last year – and now I’m at 2:44.”
Danielle Drescher competed in five events, her best being 100m free and 200m free.
“I wasn’t feeling the greatest during the swim meet, so I kind of added (time). My stroke wasn’t as good as I was hoping it would be. My muscles weren’t working as good, so it was all choppy.”
She knew during the first swim that it was going to be ‘one of those meets.’
Danielle, who will be competing this coming season as a 13-year-old, is looking forward to rebounding – either at festival or provincials.
Erica Klosler won five events finishing first in 100m fly, 400m free, 400m IM, 200m fly, and 200m IM. She added a pair of silver medals.
Three of her eight swims were best times – 100m fly, 400m free and 400m IM.
“I know added a few seconds in 200m fly (3:03.85), because earlier at Festival in Toronto, the first weekend of June, I made three minutes. Then I made three minutes again, and that was kind of disappointing because I was hoping to get under three minutes.”
Klosler’s times were fast, but not quite national times, although as a 12-year-old she will be limited to Festival again.
“No,” Klosler smiled, “I’m not as fast as Hailey.”
“She (Klosler) can make it nationals, but she has to make 12-year-old times,” noted Danielle.
“I’m probably close to a provincial time in 100 fly,” said Klosler. “Probably… I could be wrong.”
Also swimming at the WOSA Long Course Regionals were SWA’s Aiden Chisholm, Jacob Corrigan, Amy Meharg, Owen Harriet, Dalton Sanderson, and Brandon Shearing.