Swimmers bring home bronze from Provincial Championships
Local swimmers from the Nose Creek Swim Association took home two bronze medals from the 2013 Speedo Alberta Age Group Championships, held March 1 to 3 at Calgary’s Talisman Centre.
Daniel Paquette, 14, earned a bronze in the boys 14 and under 800-metre freestyle event in a time of 9:16:60, while Ethan Smith, 11, took home third place in the boys 11 and under 50-metre backstroke in a time of 33.33.
Paquette, a Grade 9 student at George McDougall High School, also earned an eighth in the boys 14 to 15 400-metre freestyle event.
Paquette said he was happy with his performance, although he hoped to do better in his 400-metre free.
He added earning the bronze took him by surprise.
“I didn’t think I did that well,” he said, adding pacing and stamina is important in long distance swims.
Paquette said his next goal is to earn his long-course national time, allowing him to compete at Nationals, to take place in Montreal this summer.
Smith, a Grade 6 student at École Airdrie Middle School, also earned fourth in the 200-metre back, sixth in the 100-metre back, eighth in the 100-metre freestyle and, along with Calgary-based teammates Jibreal ElChikifi, Jackson Zubach and Braden Ahl, eighth in the 11 and under 200-metre freestyle relay event.
A number of other Airdrie athletes had top eight finishes at the meet, which featured top-level swimmers from across the province.
Madale Polsfut, 10, earned a fourth in the 100-metre individual medley event, sixth in the 100-metre back, sevenths in the 50-metre back and 50-metre free and an eight in the 100-metre free event.
Zander Glatz, 14, earned a seventh in the boys 14 to 15 200-metre backstroke event and eighth in the 100-metre butterfly.
He also earned his age group national time in the 200-metre and 100-metre butterfly events, allowing him to compete at Nationals.
Assistant Head Coach Alexx Diep said both Glatz and younger brother Reid were recognized for their swimming skills in the 200-metre fly and 200-metre back, respectively, when they swam faster than the top-25 youth recognition standards.
Diep said Paquette and Glatz were both short-listed for a selection with the Prospect West Team, but were just edged out by strong competition in their age group.
“I felt the kids did a fantastic job at this meet,” said Diep.
“The focus on deck was very precise on good performance and on improving their abilities. These kids put in an average of eight to 12 hours of training weekly for the last 25 weeks. All their effort and dedication was measured this weekend and I am happy they got the results they deserved.”
Heading into long-course season, NCSA swimmers will now take a break from hard training to refocus on basic skills, said Diep.
“April will mark the start of the long course season and we are excited for it.”