Swimmers keep competing despite limited practice timeNov 29, 2021 01:20PM ● By Catherine Garrett
Region 5 100 backstroke champion Abel Chomjak, of Woods Cross, was part of three first-place relay teams at the Region Relays at Layton Surf ‘n Swim Nov. 12. Photo courtesy Cherie Hunsaker
Davis boys and girls placed first at Region Relays in Ogden Nov. 9.
“We love this meet because it is all relay events, including some funky ones such as an 8x25 relay, kick relay and T-shirt relay,” said head coach Kit Barker.
At the Cedar City swim meet Nov. 12-13, Sam Carlson won the 50 and 100 freestyle events for the second-place boys team while Lauryn Hall touched the wall first in the 100 and 200 free for the girls squad who took third out of 12 teams.
Other top placers for the Darts included Lia Merrill (first, 200 Individual Medley; second, 100 backstroke) and Garrett Barker (first, 200 free; third, 500 free).
“The meet was great and all, but hanging out on the bus and at the hotel, these kids know how to have fun and make memories!” Barker said. Twenty-nine swimmers dropped times for the Davis squad in the Cedar meet.
At the Thanksgiving Swim Meet Nov. 19-20, Davis placed second overall among the 15 teams competing.
“This was our strongest competition so far and we pushed through sickness and tiredness to follow our motto this year – ‘Here To Overcome-H2O,’” Barker said.
Hall broke her own school record in the 100 fly with a time of 1:01.39, taking first in the event, while also winning the 50 free. Carlson placed first in the 50 and 100 free with Merrill winning the 100 back.
At the Region Relays in Ogden, Farmington’s girls 4x100 free relay team of Lina Dunn, Bibbles Startup, Kaitlyn Holladay and Teal Edholm placed first and are among the top 20 lineups statewide in the event.
“It was a bit chaotic being all relays, but everyone had fun,” head coach Stacy Edholm said. “This was the very first official meet for a lot of our swimmers and they all did great. Twenty-one out of the 50 swimmers we brought to the meet were swimming competitively for the very first time. I also put some swimmers in events that they had never swum before. They were nervous, but every single one showed up and did it.”
“The funniest part of the meet was the 8x25 mixed T-shirt relay,” Edholm said. “Our team came in dead last, but man, was that comedy to watch! There were eight swimmers that had to swim across the pool in a T-shirt, hop out or get pulled out by their teammates, and get the shirt off of them and onto the next swimmer in the relay. Pulling a wet T-shirt off and putting it onto someone else is hard work!”
Edholm said she is excited about what she is learning about the strengths of her athletes and the improvement in times she is already seeing.
Head coach Alexa Lou Olson said the Region Relays at Northridge her team competed at Nov. 12 was a good first meet. “It was good for our team to get to know one another and it was a good team building experience,” she said.
At the Wasatch Thanksgiving Invitational in Heber Nov. 19-20, Olson said the Redhawks did well with a lot of swimmers recording best times. “It was a good competitive meet that helped our team have a solid idea of what we need to work on,” she said. “Our captains helped all of our new swimmers and were good examples of what it means to show up to your team.”
Olson said that the South Davis Rec Center has opened again, getting her team back at their home pool. “We are very grateful to Layton, Northridge and Davis who have let us share their space with them,” she said, noting Tim Best’s help in finding area teams places to swim and the reality that the pool closure again “highlighted the need for another facility in Davis County.”
In a tri-meet with Bingham and Corner Canyon Nov. 17, the Vikings had several top swims, including 12 first-place finishes in Eric Chamberlain (200 free), Elle Decker (200 IM, 100 breast), Ben Harris (200 IM, 100 fly), Gabby Henry (100 free, 200 free), Audrey Kim (100 fly), the girls 200 medley relay team of Sarah Spangenberg, Elle Decker, Audrey Kim and Addie Wood, the girls 200 free relay lineup of Izzy Harris, Wood, Malin Howe and Henry, the girls 400 free relay team of Kim, Izzy Harris, Henry and Decker and the boys free relay lineup of Andrew Webster, Jared Chamberlain, Ben Harris and Eric Chamberlain.
At the Surf ‘n Swim Invite Nov. 20, The Vikings were not at full strength but still managed eight top-five finishes.
At the Region Relays at Layton Surf ‘n Swim Nov. 12, the mixed 200 medley lineup of Elizabeth Hall, Abel Chomjak, Alanna Holzer, Justin Chamberlain, Grace Gilbery, Dylan Suarez, Grace Woodbury and Isaac Chomjak took first by 17 seconds in what assistant coach Jamie Holzer called the highlight of the meet.
“Our team was really smooth, efficient and smart about helping each other and transferring the T-shirt [among their eight swimmer lineup],” she said. “Once our swimmers had a pretty solid lead, they started swimming butterfly instead of freestyle which was very cool. I love that our kids’ ideas of fun is to work harder and do butterfly. What awesome work ethic!”
Other top finishers for the Wildcats were the boys 400 medley team of Justin Chamberlain, James Norman, Isaac Chomjak and Abel Chomjak, which took first. “It’s meant to be a unique meet composed of fun relays,” Holzer said. “The kids had a lot of fun.”