The YWCA Evanston/North Shore Flying Fish placed fourth in the annual YWCA national championships, their best showing in the nine years they have attended the annual competition, held this year in Charlotte, N.C., April 3-6. The Flying Fish were represented by 40 swimmers, competing in both junior (13 and under) and senior (14 and over) divisions.
“In the first couple of years we came here, we only had six swimmers who qualified, all in the junior division,” said Head Coach Peter Caragher.
“We now have 40 swimmers qualifying, and it’s evenly spread across boys and girls, junior and senior divisions. It shows the maturity of our team, and coming off a month of championship meets, the kids swam beyond my expectations. It was our first time scoring over 1,000 points at this meet, and those points were really evenly split between boys and girls.”
Two Flying Fish swimmers raced to first-place finishes in multiple events. In the junior division, Blake Morgan was first in the 100 breast, 200 breast, 200 free and 500 free. His 200 breast also set a meet record. In the senior division, Kristina Walsh placed first in both the 100 breast and 200 breast.
In addition, 17 swimmers from the YWCA Flying Fish qualified to compete in finals (Top 16), scoring points for the team in both divisions:
Max Behles – 200 free (8th), 500 free (5th)
A.J. Chen-Young – 100 breast (8th), 200 breast (5th), 100 fly (6th), 400 IM (7th), 200 fly (5th)
Nick Killeen – 1000 free (3rd), 200 free (5th), 500 free (4th), 400 IM (6th)
Ben McBratney – 100 breast (6th), 200 breast (7th)
Jane Munro – 200 free (5th), 50 free (3rd), 200 back (4th), 100 back (2nd), 100 free (7th)
William Myers – 200 breast (8th)
C.J. Smith – 1000 free (5th), 500 free (7th)
Kristina Walsh – 200 IM (3rd), 50 free (6th), 400 IM (2nd)
In addition, the senior girls (Walsh, Julianne Locher, Maddy Norris, Munro) placed fourth in the 200 medley relay; third in the 400 medley relay; sixth in the 200 free relay; and seventh in the 400 free relay.
The senior boys medley relays (Behles, McBratney, Chen-Young, Killeen) placed fifth in the 200, and fourth in the 400. Their freestyle relays (Chen-Young, Behles, Killeen, McBratney) placed sixth in the 200 and 5th in the 400.
Matteo Brucato – 200 breast (8th)
John McBratney – 500 free (6th), 200 free (7th)
Blake Morgan – 100 IM (4th), 200 IM (3rd)
Madeline Savage – 500 free (3rd), 200 free (7th), 200 back (3rd), 50 free (8th), 100 back (7th)
Amanda Weidner – 500 free (6th), 200 back (2nd), 200 free (3rd), 50 free (6th), 100 back (8th), 100 free (4th)
The junior girls medley relay (Savage, Caroline Duke, Weidner, Rita Behles) placed fifth in the 200 and sixth in the 400. Their 200 free relay placed seventh (Savage, Duke, Weidner, Behles) and the 400 free relay sixth. The junior boys relay (McBratney, Illan Ireland, Morgan, Brucato) placed eighth in the 400 medley sixth in the 200 free and third in the 400 free.
Team records were set by Jane Munro (girls open 50 free), Kristina Walsh (open 100 breast, 200 breast, 200 IM, 400 IM), Nick Killeen (13 & 14 boys 200 free, 500 free, 100 fly) and A.J. Chen-Young (boys open 200 fly and 400 IM). All the senior girls relays and the senior boys freestyle relays set new team records as well.