Aquanauts shine in home pool

Lucas Punkari

With home pool advantage at their disposable, the Fort Frances Aquanauts were able to parlay that into a successful showing during the annual Boston Pizza Winter Chill Invitational over the weekend at the Memorial Sports Centre.
“These events at a home pool are sometimes the toughest for a swimmer because there distracted by family and friends who are watching them swim and all those sorts of things,” Aquanauts’ head coach Dawnn Taylor noted.
“[But] I thought our swimmers did great,” she enthused.
“Our senior swam well and the younger swimmers put up some fantastic times, as well.”
Leading the way for the Aquanauts was Donovan Taylor, who captured gold in the boys’ 15 and over division.
Taylor also punched his ticket to the all-Ontarios, being held in Etobicoke at the beginning of March, where we will represent Fort High in the 100m butterfly and 200m I.M. events.
Five other swimmers represented the Muskies during last weekend’s meet here, but only Taylor reached the time needed to qualify for OFSAA.
“The swimmers went out there and put their heart into it, and in general I thought they did really well,” said Muskie swim coach Dany Michaud.
“For Donovan now, we’ll just be working with him to keep him focused on what’s ahead,” Michaud added.
“If he has any issues with his technique, we’ll work on that, but I doubt we’ll have to do much with that because he’s a really strong swimmer.”
Meanwhile, Aquanaut Katja Sutherland ended up tied with Tessa Tieman (Northwest Narwhal Swim Club) for top spot in the girls’ 15 and over division.
Sutherland’s teammate, Krista Emond, wound up only one point behind the top two.
Also capturing medals for the Aquanauts last weekend were Regan Danylchuk (silver in the girls’ 11-12 division), Adam Stromberg (bronze in the boys’ 11-12 division), and Levi Rittau (silver in the boys’ 13-14 division).
Besides those who finished with a medal around their necks, Dawnn Taylor cited the results of a couple of younger swimmers that she and her fellow coaches felt did well over the weekend.
“Anika Beaudry sets personal best times in all of her events, and Joshua Cousineau did very well and showed some great improvement,” Taylor noted.
“The entire team did really well, though, and they all had a really good time, as well,” she added.
With Swim Ontario designating March to be a rest-and-recovery month, the Aquanauts will have to wait until the middle of April for their next meet, which is the annual Division III competition in Thunder Bay.