The Kitimat Marlins swim club sent four swimmers as part of team Points North (Kitimat, Smithers, Terrace and Rupert) to the AA Provincial Championships in Chilliwack the February 11-12 weekend.
More than 350 AA swimmers were in attendance. Swimmers become eligible for AA Provincial championships by reaching the AA time standard in at least one event and are ineligible if they have one or more AAA qualifying time (the highest Provincial level).
This leads to some incredibly close, fun racing.
The Marlins swimmers were up to the task as all four swimmers swam to 100 per cent personal best times and made huge improvements in most of their events.
And the quartet combined for a whopping 13 medals.
Alivia Salema (11), competing in the 11-year-old girl category, led the way with three gold medals and three AAA Provincial qualifying times.
She had the biggest one swim improvement out of the four Marlins competing with a 39 second drop in the 800 freestyle on her way from a come-from-behind victory and her first AAA qualifying time.
She also took the gold in the 400 freestyle and the 400 Individual Medley, again coming from behind and reaching the AAA qualifying standard in both.
Alivia also made finals (top 8) in the 100 backstroke finishing eighth.
With her qualifying swims Alivia will be competing at the AAA championships in two weeks time in Surrey.
Brander Pacheco (13), competing in the 13-year-old boy category, took home an impressive five medals. Making this feat even more incredible is that Brander only started swimming competitively in September and qualified by a mere 10th of a second in the 100 backstroke only two weeks earlier at the Northwest swimming championships in Prince Rupert.
At the AAs Brander took off a large four more seconds off the 100 backstroke to win the event.
He also improved in the 200 backstroke by an amazing 26 seconds, again winning the gold medal.
In the 100 metre butterfly, a race he just tried for the first time in Prince Rupert, he chopped another jaw dropping 13 seconds from his old time to win the silver medal.
Brander also helped the 14-under boys Points North medley and free relay squads to double bronze medals. He also placed 8th in the 50 metre freestyle
Paige Collier (14), competing in the 14-year-old girl category, had a four medal performance.
In the 800 freestyle Paige had her biggest improvement with a 23 second drop from her previous best time in a bronze medal performance.
She also took home the bronze medals in the 400 and 200 freestyle, again with big improvements in her personal best times.
Paige also helped the 18-under girls Points North freestyle relay to a silver medal.
Paige also made finals (top 8) in the 100 metre freestyle, placing 7th ,and the 50 metre freestyle, placing 8th.
Amanda Craft (15), competing in the tough 15-over category, had a great meet with huge improvements in all five of her races.
She helped the 18-under girls Points North freestyle relay to a silver medal.
In her individual races Amanda made finals in three of her events. Her best result came in the 400 freestyle where she placed 7th overall with a huge 23 seconds improvement and becomes the first girl Marlin to break the five minute mark in the event for many years.
Amanda also made finals in the 100 and 200 metre freestyle, finishing 8th in both.