The Campbell River Killer Whales sent their team to Chilliwack this past weekend, to compete in the B.C. AA Short Course Championships.
There was more than 500 swimmers competing from across the province as well as teams from both Quebec and the Yukon.
On the first day, all five Campbell River swimmers had made finals and the club had won three medals.
“Yes, it was great start to the meet. You could really feel the energy from the close races spurring our young athletes to push harder,” said head coach Chris Koopmans.
Kennedy Windle won a bronze medal in the 200 metre butterfly, a race that requires endurance and exceptional technique to be competitive.
“It takes a lot of courage to race that event, as many young swimmers shy away from swimming 200 fly due to how demanding it can be,” said Koopmans.
Next up was Jennifer Miller, who had just swum a best time in the 200 individual medley and was determined to win a medal at this competition.
Miller exploded out of the blocks and took the lead early in the 50 metre freestlye. After the turn, she was in fifth place, but put on a tremendous spurt of speed to win a bronze medal with a time of 29 seconds flat.
“It feels great to finally break the 30-second barrier in the 50 free. I knew I could do it tonight,” said the 13-year-old.
Austin Johnson was gearing up for his specialty, the 100-metre back crawl, and seemed to be completely focused for the final.
However, it was his final push at the end of the race that secured him a trip to podium. “Austin has been improving at a phenomenal rate and is probably the most improved at this swim meet for our team,” the coach said. “In a sport that is measured by tenths of a second, for him to take almost two seconds off is just fantastic.”
Rounding out the meet for the Killer Whales, Jenna Beaudin took more than 12 seconds off her personal best in the 200-metre breast stroke and just missed earning a medal medal.
Cassidy Scott took off almost 20 seconds in the 200 Fly, just missing the AAA cut for the next championship in March.
This Thursday, David Palmer heads to Kamloops to represent the Killer Whales at the Canadian Western Championships.