Sea Lions win swim meet in Coolidge

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Ethan Kellam, 7, races Crush Pisano, 7, from the Coolidge team in the 25 breaststroke. It was one of many close races between the two. (Maya Gort photo)

The San Manuel Sea Lions swim team traveled to Coolidge for a swim meet against Coolidge Dolphins on Saturday, June 29. The Sea Lions won the meet with 915 points, while the Dolphins finished with 765 points.

Coolidge has an excellent swimming program, and very few visiting teams have found a way to win a swim meet in Coolidge. The Sea Lions seem to have figured out the recipe for winning. On Saturday, it was the relays that made the difference. The individual events were very close, with each team winning about the same number of events. The outcome of the meet was clearly determined by the Sea Lions winning 17 out of the 20 relays events.

A group of 7 year old boys showed that the Sea Lions best years may be in the future. The Sea Lions have such a strong group of 7 year olds that they consistently win the 8 and under relays without an 8 year old on the relay team.

Three team records were broken on Saturday. Gianna Sweeney improved her own team records in the 50 Yard Freestyle and the 100 Yard Individual Medley (IM). Darien Apuron and Raya Woods joined Gianna in the Freestyle Relay to shave 3 tenths of a second of the record previous that was set in 2010.

The following four swimmers swam the maximum number of allowed events and had personal best times in each: Mason Stewart, Joey Castellanos, Star Chavez, and Andres Valenzuela.

Three swimmers swam the maximum number of events and won all of them: Tabitha Kellam, Will Newman and Wayne Newman.

The following swimmers had first place finishes on Saturday:

Mikael Corona, 6, (Fly)

Nevaeh Derrick, 7, (Fly, Medley Relay);

Katarina Corona, 7, (Free Relay);

Ethan Kellam, 7, (50 Free, Free, Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Mason Stewart, 7, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Rocky Andrade, 7, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Ashlee Parker, 8, (IM, Back, Free, Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Briana Castellanos, 8, (Free Relay);

Desiree Galarza, 8, (Medley Relay):

Tabitha Kellam, 9, (IM, Fly, Back, Breast, Free, 100 Free, Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Rianna Estrada, 9, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Hunter Hill, 9, (Free Relay);

Riley Stewart, 9, (Free Relay);

Alicia Galarza, 10, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Star Chavez, 10, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Evan Apuron, 10, (IM, Fly, Back, Breast, Free, 50 Free);

Vince Nguyen, 10, (Free Relay);

Kayla Parker, 11, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Darien Apuron, 12, (Back, Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Gianna Sweeney, 12, (IM, Fly, Breast, 100 Free, Free, Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Gillian Cole, 12, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Jessi Rice, 12, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Jasmine Smith, 12, (Free Relay);

Raya Woods, 13, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Will Newman, 13, (IM, Fly, Back, Breast, 100 Free, Free, Medley Relay, Free Relay)

Michael Garcia, 14, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Christian Ramirez, 14, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Colbey Stratton, 14, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Taylor Woods, 15, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Megan Garcia, 16, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Jazelle Sanchez, 16, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Amara Apuron, 17, (IM, Fly,100 Free, Breast, Free, Medley Relay, Free Relay);

John Bribiescas, 17, (Medley Relay, Free Relay);

Wayne Newman, 18, (IM, Fly, Back 100 Free, Breast, Free, Medley Relay, Free Relay);

This was the first swim meet for Michael Oldham (7). Michael showed off his abilities by competing in five individual events and two relays and earning a couple of ribbons.

Andres Valenzuela (11) was named Sea Lion Beast of the Week. Andres swam all the events and achieved a best time in each. It is his first season competing with the Sea Lions and he has quickly improved to be one the best in his age group.

The next meet for the Sea Lions will be the Central Arizona Relay meet on Saturday, July 10, at the Anthem Merrill Ranch Pool in Florence.

There is still time to join the team – contact Jeanine Apuron at 385-9854 or stop by the San Manuel Pool between 4:30 and 6 p.m. (Mon-Fri) for more information.

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Joey Castellanos, 7, swims the 25 backstroke. (Maya Gort photo)


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Rianna Estrada, 9, swims the 50 butterfly. (Maya Gort photo)

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