Inland Empire Short Course Championships

David Dolphay

    IES Short course championships is our premiere team championship meet of the year-a great measuring stick that all the clubs in Inland Empire to use to evaluate how well they stack up. This year, CAST climbed as high as we ever have, riding a surge of excellent swims to take second place-tied for our highest place in team history, and closer to first than ever before! CAST was within striking distance of SWAT for the whole meet, and should be well set up to challenge the Waves for first place next year! One item that we are excited to announce is the election of Demi Blaylock, Ben Linford, and Camryn Schmidt as our team captains for the next year, as voted on by the A, Jr, and Sr squad swimmers; Congratulations to all 3 of you!

    Our team’s success is due to a host of terrific individual performances; with 52 athletes attending, I won’t be able to highlight every swimmer-but we as a coaching staff had a blast watching our athletes rise to race time after time, and are extremely proud of each and every swimmer on how well they competed!

   A dozen Crocs won at least one individual event last weekend. Michaela Richards continues to re-write the CAST record board, with new team records in the 50 back, 50 free, and 100 free. Michaela at 8 was out there competing and beating 10 year olds, highlighted by a win in the 50 butterfly! Tillie Sobek earned high point honors for the 13-14 girls, winning the 500 free, 400 IM, 1000 free, 100 free, 200 free, and 200 fly-a grueling event set if there ever was one! Makena Mamola burst onto the scene with her first meet as a Croc, and lit it up with wins in the 500 free and 200 free and a terrific second place in the 400 IM; Makena earned 4 personal bests, with her 500 free now 8th on CAST’s All-Time Performance list! Michael Mamola similarly had a terrific batch of swims, with 5 best times and wins in the 400 IM, 200 fly, and 500 free. Eli Shaw took top honors in the 50 fly and was a tremendous 7 for 8 on best times throughout the weekend. Trace Bennett won the 200 IM and 500 freestyles and swam 5 personal bests. Adeline Downing won the 100 and 200 freestyles en route to 5 best times over the course of the weekend. Demi Blaylock captured first place in the 50 breast and lowered her best time in the 100 breast as well to rise up the top-10 performer list. Everly Desancic won the 50 free and posted best times in the 200 IM and 100 IM. Bostyn Shoemaker battled illness all weekend but still managed a win in the 50 breast and PR’s in the 100 breast and 100 fly. Dylan Gardner  came in seeded 9th in the 50 back but came out of nowhere to win it! He also dropped a big chunk in his 50 free. Dallin Stephens claimed victory in the 1000 freestyle en route to an impressive 7 best times. And finally, Maggie Sobek won the 400 IM and went 5 best times, earning two new AGS cuts along the way. 

    Our swimmers practically drowned their coaches with all the medals they earned; but great racing isn’t only about taking the top spot! Many of our swimmers shone strong in a variety of racing situations. Nina Emry qualified for the prestigious Age Group Sectional meet in Federal Way in 2 weeks with a big drop in her 50 freestyle to pair with her perfect 8 for 8 best times! Dawson Cushman had the unique opportunity for a swim off to determine who would make it into finals in the 100 free, and he crushed it, winning by a second and lowering his PR by 2 seconds. Quinn Taylor swam 8 fabulous personal bests, highlighted by her top-10 performer time and second place finish in the 200 breast.Emerson Haley showed off amazing back half speed in her 200 back and 200 freestyle, impressing the coaches with her will to go faster and race!  Elijah Brown was a workhorse all weekend, swimming prelims and then finagling in all 8 of his individual events, where he swam to 6 strong best times. Harris Crow netted 6 new best times and had a standout swim in his 50 breaststroke to just nab second place. Andrew Davis was another swimmer with a grueling event slate of 8 events including the 500 free, 400 IM, and mile, and raced to 5 best times by the time he was all through. Raegan Greiner swam 5 for 5 best times, capped by a terrific 500 free that saw her break 6:00 for the first time. George Lavy finished off a season full of improvement with 5 best times, most notably his 6 second drop in the 200 IM. Chance Seeds made the most of his two swims, with a terrific 4 second drop in the 200 free to break 2:00 and an absolutely monstrous 2.5 second drop in his 100 freestyle to nearly make finals! Eleanor Strow lit up the 10 and under events with 7 best times and a nail biting, stand up and shout about it race in the 50 breast where she took second place. Liv Tyslau had 6 PR’s and finished an impressive 3rd in the 200 IM, breaking the 3:00 barrier for the first time. Finally, Jace Voeller did a great job adapting as the weekend went on, updating and improving his racing strategy with big time drop payoffs in finals of the 100 freestyle and 200 back on Sunday. 

    Those are less than half of the great performances we had last weekend-it was a fun meet to coach, and made all of us proud of the work our athletes put in over the course of the year and during the meet itself. What a great bunch of kids to have come together!