National records broken at RBC swim nationals
Guardian Sports Reporter
Published: Jun 24, 2013
Even though a number of the top swimmers in the country were missing at this year’s Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) Bahamas Swimming Federation’s (BSF) National Championships, the meet was still dubbed a splashing success by federation president Algernon Cargill.
Missing out on the meet were Olympians Vereance Burrows and Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, who had a college commitment. Vanderpool-Wallace’s absence was noted but it cleared the lane for a few swimmers who had their eyes set on qualifying for top regional and international meets, to be held this summer. Along with many qualifiers, a handful of national records were broken this past weekend, at the swim meet, which was held at the Betty Kelly-Kenning National Aquatics Center.
A new national record was set in the 800 meters (m) free for girls 15-and-over by Joanna Evans. She touched the wall in 8:59.49, lowering the old mark of 9:01.84, which she swam in April this year. Miriam Crispo was second, in 10:10.51, and Abigail Lowe was third, in 10:49.00.
Erasing a 13-year-old record that was set in the 1,500m freestyle was Matthew Lowe. Olympian Jeremy Knowles swam 16:11.20 in 2000 and set the old record. Lowe’s time this past weekend was 16:08.19.
“The results in this meet have been very good,” said Cargill. “This meet is a stepping stone to the CCCAN (Central American and Caribbean Amateur Swimming Confederation Championships), which we travel to next week, as well as the World University Games and the World Championships. It was a mandatory meet for all of our swimmers, to represent the country at any of the meets this year as well as next year. We had about 500 swimmers registered for the meet, which is a record for us. We had all of our teams participating as well.
“There have been some really outstanding performances, particularly in the 8-and-under and the 9-10 divisions. The senior swims haven’t been great but they were good in terms of the swimmers and the hard training for the championships that they will be going to and competing in over the rest of the summer. Makayla Lightbourn, she is a swimmer at Florida State, and she had an outstanding time in the 200m backstroke. Gershwin Greene had an outstanding time in the 50m backstroke. We have swimmers who are really prepared for the rest of the season. Our season ends in August; so we are very happy about the performances at this year’s meet.”
The four-day swim meet ended late Sunday evening.
Greene, who competes in the 13-14 boys division, won the 200m individual medley (IM) in 2:22.09. Finishing second was Alexander Encinar and Jared Fitzgerald finished third. Margaret Albury-Higgs took the 13-14 girls 200 IM in 2:37.54, and Davante Carey won the 8-10 boys 200 IM in 2:51.59. Winning the 15-and-over 200 IM was Joanna Evans. She swam 2:30.19 for the win over Laura Morley. Morley and Ariel Weech touched the wall in 2:31.88 and 2:36.48 respectively.
Albury-Higgs added the 800m freestyle title to her collection. She stopped the clock at 10:27.54. Completing the Swift Swimming 1-2 sweep in that event was Tremaine Allen, who clocked 10:37.03.
Joshua Roberts got the win in 11-12 division for boys in the 200m backstroke. His time is a new national record in that age group, 2:35.37. The old mark was 2:37.34, set by Je’Vaughn Saunders in 2002. The showdown in the 15-and-over girls 200m backstroke went to Lightbourn. Evans finished in second. Lightbourn’s time was 2:25.11 and Evans finished in 2:35.79.
The executive members will announce the team members for this year’s CCCAN Championships today. The meet is set for June 29-July 5 in Costa Rica.