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Team Bahamas holds steady in swimming

Sports Scope
  • MARGARET ALBURY HIGGS

FRED STURRUP
Guardian Columnist/Sales Executive

Published: Apr 18, 2012

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The total points factor is how the best teams at the CARIFTA Swimming Championships are determined. This represents a confused issue for many, as in other sports, particularly athletics, the amount of gold medals result in top honors.

I knew about swimming, but just recently having a discussion that was split right down the middle regarding how championship status is worked out, I wanted confirmation. I approached the 27th CARIFTA Swimming Championships Director John Bradley on the matter. He verified that it’s all about getting the most points. Thus, The Bahamas, with 657 total points, finished in second place on Sunday when the annual regional water sports extravaganza came to a conclusion.

An astounding Guadeloupe team amassed 821.50 points to earn the right to be called the best for 2012. Yearly swimming power Trinidad & Tobago finished third with 648 points. If the gold medal format had been used, Team Bahamas (13) would have finished third behind Trinidad & Tobago (26) and Guadeloupe (25). Aruba had 13 gold medals also, but was out-distanced easily by The Bahamas in silver and bronze medals.

No matter though, watching our young girls and boys churn up the water at the Betty Kelly Kenning Swim Complex to bring The Bahamas glory, was a special experience. Setting the tune was the little 11-12 mermaid Margaret Albury Higgs who was involved in six gold medals for The Bahamas, four of them individually.

Prominent in gathering the 49 total medals and 657 points were some wonderful young Bahamian sports ambassadors, the likes of Dionisio Carey, Matthew Lowe, Simone Sturrup, Joanna Evans, Celia Campbell, Leslie Campbell, Megan Reid, Jasmine Gibson, Tremaine Allen, Zach Moses, Dustin Tynes, Anibal Valdes Hernandez, T’Auren Moss, Doran Reed, Farion Cooper, Gershwin Greene, Bria Deveaux, Taryn Smith, Doran Reid, Drew Bastian, Evante Gibson, Keith Lloyd, Alaena Carey, Abigail Lowe and Keitra Lloyd.

I salute these stalwart national representatives. Like the national team from athletics that distinguished itself in Bermuda at that sport’s CARIFTA Championships a week earlier, our swimmers, although competing valiantly, were still upstaged by the local politicians who are deep into general elections and campaign mode.

Isn’t it ironic that the silliness coming forth from the political arena, the moving of rival signs and posters, and the low personal attacks from podiums still overshadowed our patriotic positive-image boosters? Well, that’s life in The Bahamas. Congratulations to BSF President Algernon Cargill and the rest of the national swim family.

I say to the national sports fraternity in general, be encouraged.

(To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at sturrup1504@gmail.com)

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