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Rays sting competition at Sharks’ meet

The Trail Stingrays are on a roll as they continue their domination in the pool by winning yet another swim meet on the weekend.
The Trail Stingrays proudly display the team trophy won at the Colville Sharks swim meet on the weekend. Coach Gurney’s tough training program has definitely paid off

The Trail Stingrays are on a roll as they continue their domination in the pool by winning yet another swim meet on the weekend.

About 40 Stingrays traveled to Colville where they performed swimmingly on their way to a repeat victory, besting the second place Colville Sharks’ by more than 200 points.

“Colville is at the top of the favourites list for all the swimmers,” said Stingrays’ coach Ryan Gurney. “Every team camps in the enormous Colville park and there are always fun events and activities going on throughout the day.”

The victory is also the fourth meet the Rays have won this year but they may have trouble keeping the streak going when they swim in the Castlegar meet this weekend.

“Castlegar is a finals meet so it’s really competitive, and it’s a good preview for the kids because that’s where regionals is going to be held this year. So this is a good chance to get use to that pool and get a feel for it . . . but it’s going to be tough.”

The Stingrays just started the most demanding training week of the season in what Gurney calls “Hell Week.”

It’s actually two weeks of rigorous training, when swimmers train all out, every day as they build up towards the regionals and provinicials.

“Their muscles are just exhausted, but then we go into a tapered (week) that lets the muscles recover and that’s when they’re able to peak and go their best times.”

Timing is everything as swimmers shoot for their best performances at the most important meets like Regionals and Provincials.

Gurney’s studies at the Pacific Institute of Sports Excellence in Victoria combined with seven years coaching experience has helped develop a training regimen that obviously brings results.

“It’s definitely been working out . . . I think already we’ve shown that we’re a really strong team in this region.”

Gold medals went to Dylan Kormendy Div. 1, Eden Kormendy Div.3, Jerome Santiago Div.4, Jennifer Chung Div. 5, and Samme Beatson Div. 7. Silver was seized by Kayla Fraser Div.2, Jovan Santiago Div.4, Madi Green Div.5, and Christine Cook Div.7, while Sharman Thomas Div.4, Cassidy Martin Div.5, and Oleg Liferovich Div.5, took home bronze.

Beatson also competed in the Kelowna Meet during Canada Day weekend, and finished with a gold medal against a strong competitive field from all over B.C.

The Stingrays collected 3,177 points, outdistancing the Colville Sharks’ larger contingent by more than 200 points. Castlegar finished third, with Grand Forks, Kimberley, Nelson, Penticton and Creston rounding out the standings.



Jim Bailey

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