ESTEVAN - Members of the Estevan Golden Eels Swim Club are reaching their peak at just the right time.
The Eels finished in top spot at their annual home meet Saturday at the Estevan Leisure Centre’s pool. The following day, they took top spot at the Oxbow Seawolves meet.
Point totals for the meets weren’t immediately available, but Charlotte Andrist, one of the coaches for the program, noted that Estevan had the strongest results. Estevan had 64 top-3 finishes at their home meet, including 30 first place results, while Regina was the next closest on both fronts with 36 top-three finishes, with 16 of them being firsts.
As for Oxbow, it was a smaller meet, as Andrist said the second meet on a weekend typically attracts fewer swimmers. Estevan still managed 75 top-three finishes, well ahead of Regina’s 47.
Eight Eels won overall age group medals at their meet: Charlie Pyra (gold, seven and eight girls), Jackson Enns (gold, seven and eight boys), Isabelle Pyra (gold, nine and 10 girls), Jordyn Tarnes (gold, 13 and 14 girls), Tristan Threinen (gold, 15-17 boys), Kayden Pukas (silver, seven and eight girls), Thacia Brignall (silver, nine and 10 girls), and Sarah Pyra (silver, 11 and 12 girls).
The overall medal winners for the Oxbow meet were not immediately available.
The Estevan meet also had a lot of great parent volunteers who worked at the meet, Andrist said, and it was great to have their support.
Andrist noted the club has fewer members this year, with 38 athletes. She said their numbers are down following the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, as they have had as many as 60 swimmers.
The season also had a later start than normal.
“These swimmers put in a lot of hard work and they’re very determined,” said Andrist.
Earlier this year, the Eels attended meets in Humboldt and Regina. Four swimmers attended the Humboldt meet: Tegan and Danica Mosley, Jennika Linthicum and Mahlyn Bomberak
The Regina swim meet had 14 athletes attend on June 25. Total points medallists were Jordyn Tarnes, gold, 13-14 girls; Ethan Elliot, gold, 15-17 boys; Tristan Threinen, silver, 15-17 boys; and Emily Tarnes, silver, 15-17 girls.
In Regina, Elliott broke a provincial record in the 400-metre freestyle with a time of four minutes and 43.74 seconds, smashing the old record of four minutes and 56.99 seconds.
Jordyn Tarnes set four records: in the 50-metre fly, the new mark is 32.24 seconds (was 32.65 seconds); 100-metre freestyle, 1:05.11 (was 1:05.48); 25-metre fly, 14.81 seconds (was 14.92); and 100-metre individual medley, 1:15.15 (was 1:17.21).
Up next for the Eels is the southern swim meet in Swift Current on July 16. If a swimmer finishes in the top six in their race, they will qualify for provincials, which will be the following weekend in Weyburn.
“It’s remarkable how much work these swimmers are willing to put in, and it’s super inspiring to see the progress that all of them have made,” said Andrist, who said they will be fine-tuning a few things this week.
The Eels have won the last five provincial tournaments.