Twenty Yorkton Speed Swimmers took part in the 48th Annual Mike Mintenko Summerfest Swim Meet in Moose Jaw. This meet is the only event the club competes at that takes place in an outdoor pool.
According to Head Coach Ashley Benko this meet is used as the season finale for the club. “Swimming in an outdoor pool is a totally different experience,” says Benko. “Swimmers have to contend with the wind, sun, and sometimes rain while they are racing.” She went on to say that the biggest difference is noticed in the backstroke events. “When swimming the backstroke indoors swimmers can focus on the ceiling of the pool, which helps them to swim in a straight line. Outdoors of course, with no ceiling, we saw some zig-zags being swam, especially by our youngest swimmers who sometimes focus on the clouds.”
Four swimmers reached the podium in Moose Jaw. Fourteen-year-old Jennifer Haczkewicz had a strong showing returning home with three golds, one each in the 50m Freestyle, 50m Backstroke, and 50m Butterfly. She also added two silvers in the 100m Backstroke and 100m Freestyle events.
Another 14-year-old swimmer Yorkton swimmer came away from Moose Jaw with multiple medals as well. Jacob Baker captured a silver in the 400m Freestyle along with a bronze in the 50m Breaststroke.
Young Cassidy Flasch, 12, swam her way to a silver medal in the 50m Butterfly while 13-year-old Auston Roberts rounded out the medal winning performances with a bronze in the 50m Breaststroke.
But while no more medals were won on the weekend that did not mean swimmers didn’t accomplish set goals. Connor Watrych also had a great meet, despite not reaching the podium. He took 2.29 seconds off in the 50m Freestyle, along with 5.84 seconds off in the 100m Freestyle events. The improvements were more than enough to earn the young swimmer his first two “A” times.
Coach Benko says, “His two “A” times will allow him to compete with our other qualified swimmers at the Long Course Provincial Meet next season.” She went on to add, “this is a great accomplishment for Connor, he’s been chasing these times for a couple of seasons now!”
The Storm Chaser Award for the biggest overall improvement per swim went to Josh Haczkewicz. Josh recorded a phenomenal improvement of 19.9 seconds on average in his four races in Moose Jaw. Alexandria Poncelet was second with an average improvement of 10.71 seconds. Camryn Mansuy was third with a 8.07 second improvement.
The team will now take a much deserved break for the summer. Training will resume for the competitive team in September.