By Greg Price
Nearly 30 swimmers made their way from the Taber Viper Swim Club to the Claresholm Kraken meet this past weekend, with many swimmers clocking top results.
“All the kids are doing super well. They’ve been beating their personal best times from last year. When it gets to the meets, they are beating the expectations that I have and they are training really hard,” said Kristen Irvine, head coach of the Taber Viper Swim Club.
Jessica Anderson managed to dominate her 13-and-14-year-old girls competition on her way to the gold aggregate medal, taking three first-place finishes as a result.
They included 100-metre backstroke (1:20.55), 50-metre fly (34.42) and 50-metre backstroke (37.84).
Heston Bevans earned a bronze aggregate medal as he won top time in 50-metre backstroke (46.13) for 11-and-12-year-old boys. He also earned second in 100-metre IM (1:41.86) and third for 100-metre breaststroke (1:53.94).
Jenna Clarke clocked a third-place time for the grueling 200-metre freestyle (3:20.85) for 15-to-17-year-old girls.
Jordyn Clarke earned second place in the lengthy 400-metre freestyle (6:50.09) and also second in 200-metre freestyle (3:18.30) for 15-to-17-year-old girls.
For nine-and-10-year-old girls, Adison Hutzul managed a first-place time in 200-metre freestyle (3:15.42).
Kaylee Hutzul clocked a third-place time for 50-metre backstroke (1:00.43).
For the 14-and-under girls category, Taylor Hutzul took top time 800-metre freestyle (14:44.80).
Evan Klemen finished his 50-metre backstroke race (47.08) in second place for 11-and-12-year-old boys. He also earned third in 50-metre fly (46.05).
Jacob Paul competed in seven-and-eight-year-old boys and took third place in 50-metre backstroke (1:05.66).
McKayla Paul took third competing in 200-metre freestyle (4:13.62) for nine-and-10-year-old girls.
Tayla Silver had a trio of second-place finishes in 50-metre fly (36.12), 50-metre backstroke (39.01) and 100-metre freestyle (1:15.06) for 13-and-14-year-old girls.
Dion Velarde finished his 100-metre backstroke race (1:21.96) in second place for 13-and-14-year-old boys.
For nine-and-10-year-old boys, Don Velarde earned thirds in both 25-metre breaststroke (25.26) and 25-metre backstroke (24.02).
The Vipers are off to a meet in Pincher Creek this weekend, the club’s third meet of the season.
“At the beginning of the year the focus is just getting back in the pool, the conditioning of swimming, the feel for the water. A lot of the kids hadn’t swam until the end of last season, so it’s been awhile since they have even been in the water,” said Irvine. “We focus a lot on getting their stroke down so that it feels normal and they are comfortable getting back in the water. We start to amp up the intensity and a little more mileage with the shorter, quicker distances.”