*Photo Links are at the end of this article*
The Lethbridge Orcas dominated Region F in the final in-region meet of the year at the Region F Championships. The Orcas came into the meet, fresh off completing their second straight undefeated regular season. Over 90 Orcas competed, leading to a victory of close to double the amount of points to the next best team.
The Lethbridge Orcas (left) won their 13th straight Region F Championship. Sweeps, such as the 1-2-3 sweep in the boy’s 11-12 200 Fr (right) with Sean Vanderzee (1st), Ben Adserballe (2nd), and John Vanden Elzen (3rd) helped this happen!
There were 359 best times by Orcas swimmers in individual events at Regionals. That equates to an average of 3.98 best times per swimmer, an incredibly high amount! 44 Orcas (nearly half of Orcas that competed) were able to swim best times in all of their individual events. Orcas who were able to do so were: Josh Adams (18+), Ben Adserballe (12), Jacob Adserballe (18+), Ethan Boras (16), Morgan Bos (15), Olivia Bos (13), Elyse Burgess (8), Ava Caputo (11), Tyson Chomiak (14), Abigail Clamp (9), Samantha Clamp (7), Alex Ginther (5), Taylor Ginther (7), Brooklyn Kimmen (10), David Kindley (15), Jocelyn Kozub (5), Hannah Lundquist (10), Payton Lundquist (10), Kate Machacek (5), Zada McLean-Borggard (6), Addy Miller (8), Nate Miller (12), Bentley Mundell (6), Myla Mundell (4), Jaxon Nault (11), Calla Nunweiler (5), Luca Nunweiler (7), Jake Odorski (10), Kierra Petrone (11), Isabelle Petry (13), Lily Petry (10), Colby Pilsner-Roberts (6), Elliott Pilsner-Roberts (8), Russell Pinder (5), Jack Schneyder (8), Pete Schneyder (6), Devlan Sheppard (13), Andie Smith (7), Hugh Swain (6), John Vanden Elzen (12), Paul Vanden Elzen (11), Sean Vanderzee (12), Alexa Weighill (9), and Tracy Wen (10).
Coach Steve and Sami Clamp (left) go through a race plan during warm-up. She ended up qualifying for Provincials in 5/6 of her events. Sean Vanderzee (right) qualified in 6/6 of his events, breaking two club records in the 50/100 backstroke, one of which had been standing since 1986
With all of Region F competing at a very high level, many Orcas swimmers found themselves battling for Provincial qualifying positions (top 2 in each event). In the end, 52 Orcas swimmers were able to qualify for Provincials either individually or on a relay team. Of those 52 swimmers, 25 swimmers were able to qualify themselves in 100% of there races. To add, all 24 relay teams that the Orcas had entered to qualify for Provincials did! Orcas swimmers earning an honourable mention, by winning gold in all of their individual events at Regionals, were: Kira Armstrong (16), Tyson Chomiak (14), Ottavio Lutterotti (9), Elliott Pilsner-Roberts (8), Bentley Togo (6), and Keeley Watt (19).
Elliott Pilsner-Roberts (left) and Kira Armstrong (right) both won six gold medals this weekend. In addition, Elliott broke 2 club records, one of which had been standing since 1990
This years Regionals also marked the breaking of 24 individual club records and 9 relay club records. In addition to these club records, 8 individual Region F records and 2 Region F relay records were broken by Orcas swimmers. Out of those Region F records, 2 individual Provincial Records were broken. The Orcas swimmer who broke two Provincial records this weekend was:
Tyson Chomiak had one of the most dominant meets in ASSA history, shattering provincial records in the 50 Bk and 50 Fr about an hour apart on Sunday after setting new Region F records in the 100 Fr and 100 IM about 20 minutes apart on Saturday
Flashback a couple months, we were talking about Alberta Championship Time Standards and the hope for Orcas to achieve these times before a specific date. Basically, summer swimmers had about 1.5 months of training to try to achieve a time standard that winter swimmers get 10 months to train for. At the time of the deadline, 1 Orcas swimmer (Jens Watt (15) – 50 Breast) had achieved the time standard. After 3.5 months of training, still significantly less than winter club, 2 more Orcas achieved these times, with 4 more Orcas falling just short. The Orcas to achieve their Provincial Time Standards and the event(s) they did it in were:
Jens Watt (left) was the lone Orca to get a Provincial Championships time standard by the deadline in the 50 Br. At Regionals, he was also able to swim the time standard in the 100 Br. Taylor Ginther (left) will make her first trip to Provincials this year after breaking the girl’s 7-8 50 backstroke club record.
Orcas who swam within 1% of the time standard and the event(s) they did it in were:
Morgan Bos (left) swam the 10th fastest girls 15-17 50 FL in ASSA history to win gold with a really fast time at Regionals. Jake Odorski (right) solidified himself as one of the clubs top young guns, breaking the club record in the boy’s 9-10 25 Bk.
When extending the standard another 3%, multiple more Orcas would be mentioned. These performances are a testament to the commitment and hard work of the Orcas, reaching very fast times in a relatively small training cycle.
The Orcas now shift their attention towards Provincial Championships in Edmonton August 18-20. The team looks in solid positions in both age group and master’s categories. They are ranked 4th in age group and 1st in masters. Strong performances this weekend will hopefully help the Orcas maintain or improve on these rankings!
Steve Kwan Photos (Sat, Sun Finals)
Shannon Bos Photos (Sat, Sun Prelims and Finals)
Derek Chomiak Photos (Fri, Sat, Sun Prelims)