The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

Local Sports

June 25, 2014

Swimming: Palestine YMCA Piranha team competes in weekend event

PALESTINE — The Palestine YMCA Piranhas competed last Saturday in the first East Texas Summer Swim League (ETSSL) regular meet of the season in Nacogdoches at the Lehmann Swim Center. The event was hosted by the Boys and Girls Club of Nacogdoches and Ambush Swimming.  

Following the time trials, the ETSSL splits the region’s teams and conducts two meets on Saturdays for the following two weekends. This past weekend, the Piranhas faced-off against two teams from Longview, Champion Aquatic Team and Longview Swim Club, the Marshall Marlins and Ambush Swimming.  

Ambush Swimming is comprised of athletes from both Nacogdoches and Lufkin.

The Mixed 11- to 12-year-old 200-yard medley relay team of Kacie Kimbrough, 11, Madison Crader, 12, Chase Fields, 11, and Grace An George, 11, got the Piranhas off to a good start with a first place win with a time of 2:30.24.

In the medley relay, each individual swims a different stroke beginning with backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and finally the freestyle.

For Kimbrough, she  narrowly missed matching her first place finish at the Lufkin Time Trials in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 28.98 and came in second to Ambush’s Kylie McCarty,  who had a time of 28.55. Kimbrough out-touched McCarty the previous Saturday.

On deck after shaking McCarty’s hand and congratulating each other on a good race, Kimbrough smiled and said their friendly rivalry was good for both athletes.

“We go back and forth a lot,” she said.

Erik Cozadd, Aquatics Director for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Lufkin and Nacogdoches and coach in the Ambush year-round swimming program, was impressed by Kimbrough’s performance.

“Your Piranha was keeping up with our girl who is a USA swimming state champion in the 100-yard freestyle,” Cozadd said.  “Palestine is producing some good swimmers. You need water full time.”

Other Piranhas being noticed for their first place successes were Crader in the girls 11- to 12-year-old 50-yard breaststroke with a time of 38.58, Fields in the boys 11- to 12-year-old 100-yard Individual Medley with a time of 1:21.05 and Summer Hagan, 14, in the girls 13- to 14-year-old 50-yard freestyle with a time of 28.31, 50-yard backstroke with a time of 33.42 and 50-yard butterfly with a time of 32.20.

“I am very proud of all 29 Piranhas who attended the meet,” said Piranha coach Kathrine Newton. “Everyone swam their best time in at least one event.”

The Piranhas will be back in Nacogdoches this coming Saturday looking forward to taking on Ambush again and testing their skills against Tyler’s Flying Fish, and Athens’ Megalodons.

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