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Swimmers make waves on provincial stage

swim1Five members of the Belleville Youth Swim Team went up against the best 13 and under swimmers in Ontario this past weekend.  Four boys competed, two in the 12 year old division, Alexander Grant and Rafik Jiwa; and two in the 13 year old category, Isaac and Ryan Jarvis.  Melissa Dingle was the lone female as a couple other qualifiers recently aged up.  BYST was able to secure a top 25 spot, but the team is looking to rank top ten in the future.  This coming weekend is Eastern Ontario Regional Championships and 17 BYST athletes are prepared to swim fast at the swim meet.

Melissa Dingle’s hard work has paid off; she is now a Provincial qualifier, a feat that only a small percentage of swimmers ever attain.  Dingle will join Talia Pappalardo, Stephanie Cairns and Katelyn Cairns in Brantford at the beginning of July.  Her first qualifying time happened in the 100m freestyle where she clocked in at 1:02.63, annihilating the qualifying time.  Later that day she also dropped over four seconds to qualify in the 200m backstroke, coming in at 2:31.48.  Her biggest drop of the meet was more than 12 seconds in the 200m freestyle where she finished at 2:17.54.  Five out of six of her events were best times and top 8 finishes, including the 50m freestyle where she broke the 30 seconds barrier with a time of 29.48.

On the male side, the foursome formed one of the fastest 13 and under relays ever seen in the Quinte area.  In the medley relay, Isaac Jarvis took the backstroke leg, Jiwa the breaststroke, Grant the butterfly and Ryan Jarvis the freestyle.  The team easily broke the 2 minute barrier in the freestyle relay.  On an individual basis, Alexander Grant lead the way by earning a silver medal in the 200m butterfly.  Although he slipped on the last wall and lost the good in the home stretch, he still managed to drop time, finishing at 2:38.05.  Grant also placed top 8 in the 100m butterfly with a time of 1:14.13.

Isaac Jarvis had a great showing in the 200m backstroke, placing 7th overall, clocking in at 2:34.15.  He was also able to take off nearly one full second in the 100m freestyle, where he finished at 1:02.43.  Rafik Jiwa had a strong performance in the 400m Individual Medley where he took off a second at 5:37.84.  He earned to fifth place finishes in the 200m breaststroke and 50m butterfly, coming in at 2:53.98 and 30.02, respectively.  Ryan Jarvis dropped a good chunk of time in the 100m backstroke with a time of 1:13.80 and raced very well against some insanely tough competition.

Out of over 100 swim clubs in the province, BYST has the ability to rank alongside multiple teams that have produced Olympians.  Only in the first year training out of and hosting competitions at the Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre, the team has already experienced tons of success by almost tripling membership and breaking over 80 club records.  Most recently, the club has competed in Ottawa where they posted 95 percent best times, Nepean with 85 percent and Kingston at 75 percent.  These are huge feats considering it is close to 10 months into the season.  Following Regional Championships in Ottawa, a large group will be heading to Brockville for the last team meet of the season and a few members will be attending Provincial Championships in Brantford and then Age Group Nationals in Montreal at the end of July.
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