Winter Games Haines meet report & pictures - Jan. 20-22, 2017

Haines Winter Games 2017

Whitehorse Glacier Bears Swim Team Report

Prepared by Coach Kirsten Bradley

Thirty-two Whitehorse Glacier Bear swimmers traveled to Haines, Alaska on the weekend of January 20 to compete at the 2017 Winter Games Swim Meet. As most of the club’s senior swimmers were competing in Whitehorse the same weekend, the club’s contingent was primarily made up of younger swimmers, from the Teddy Bear, Cub and Black Bear Squads, with a few older swimmers from Polar Bears and Teen Groups.

The meet saw just over 100 swimmers from three primary clubs; the Whitehorse Glacier Bears; the Haines Dolphins and the Juno Glacier Swim Club. This international swim event, hosted by Haines Dolphins Swim Club, was sanctioned by USA Swimming and Alaska Swimming. The meet was held in a short course 25-yard pool with six lanes. As the event was measured in yards the times do not count for Swim Canada records. This did not diminish the enthusiasm or effort of the Glacier Bears swimmers. For many of the Whitehorse Glacier Bears athletes this was their first competition away from Whitehorse, and for some, it was their first swim meet ever.

The team’s focus was on getting personal best swim times in the pool and exhibiting great sportsmanship. Our swimmers achieved many personal bests in the pool, and also won many 
heat-winner ribbons, and hundreds of event ribbons as well. Our team made an exceptional effort to cheer on our teammates, and to give high fives to teammates and competitors alike!

In addition to the swimming
success this meet helped forge a number of new friendships between Glacier Bears and the American swimmers. The Teen, Polar and Black Bears did an excellent job of mentoring the younger Cub and Teddy Bear swimmers. An outstanding effort was put in by Alexa Mannen and Zoe Benitah who facilitated the team cheers and helped steward the young swimmers into position. Maddy Mead, Finn Johnson, Naomi and Ava Dedon, and Thomas Gishler were also excellent role models cheering on and supporting the younger swimmers. 

The Haines Alaska 2017 Winter Games Meet also offered the Whitehorse Glacier Bears a chance to compete in a number of relays. For many of our swimmers this was their first exposure to swimming in a competitive relay. One of the relay highlights for our team was watching six-year-old Elliot Gishler compete with his brothers Liam and Thomas, as well as Finn Johnson in the Open (13 and over) category. They put in an excellent effort!

The 2017 Haines Alaska Winter Games swim meet was a well organized and orchestrated event.  It was a great opportunity for our young swimmers to compete in a safe and positive environment.  The hosting club did an exceptional job of making our swimmers feel welcome. Thank you to our Glacier Bear parents for their support on and off the deck for this Haines meet.


NOTE: Results for each swimmer have been posted to "My Meet Results" under their own swim family account ------ when signed in to our club website, Look under "My Account".