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AT THE MEET – The Whitehorse Glacier Bears team representing the Yukon at the B.C. Provincial Championships in Kamloops held last weekend take a moment for a team picture. Photo submitted by Malwina Bukszowana

Swimmers compete in B.C. provincials

The Whitehorse Glacier Bears (WGB) had another weekend spent in the pool as five swimmers qualified to represent the Yukon at the B.C. Provincial Championships in Kamloops.

By John Tonin on March 12, 2019

The Whitehorse Glacier Bears (WGB) had another weekend spent in the pool as five swimmers qualified to represent the Yukon at the B.C. Provincial Championships in Kamloops. The five swimmers who competed in the meet were Amelia Barrault, Kassau Dreyer, Alex Petriw, Aidan Harvey and Hannah Kingscote.

WGB coach Malwina Bukszowana said in an email that the pool the five swimmers were competing in differed from the pool they train in.

"This swim meet was taking place in a long course (50 metres) pool, which makes it much harder to compete for Yukon swimmers, who never get a chance to train in a long course pool," said Bukszowana.

The first day of the meet, Barrault, 14, set a new personal best as she qualified for the 200 Breast A final. Dreyer, 14, qualified for the 200 Breast B final in 13th.

In the last race of the day, the swimmers competed together in the mixed 200 Medley Relay. Bukszowana said that Harvey, Barrault, Kingscote, and Petriw swam their best finishing with a time of 2:03.63 coming in 32nd out of 59 teams.

Day two began with the 100 Free races. Bukszowana said Kingscote and Petriw swam their best times but it was still far off the finals. Kingscote placed 45th and Petriw grabbed 39th.

Dreyer also competed in the 100 Free races but Bukszowana said she went slower than her best time however, she had a very good race in the 400 Free afterward. She came in 56th in the 100 Free.

"She went out strong and was a leader in her heat and she held a strong and even pace," said Bukszowana. "Her last 50-metres was too slow and Dreyer said that she knows she can race better next time.

"Unfortunately, Dreyer didn't qualify to the finals but she probably could have if her last 50 was strong. Dreyer is getting more confidence in racing and she is setting up new goals. For example, she wants to extend her abilities and race 1500 Free this season and I know she can be good at it."

Dreyer came in 22nd overall. As well, swimming in the 400 Free was Petriw and Harvey, whom both swam to new best times.

"Alex and Aidan both improved the old best times in the 400 Free but again, those times were far off competition for finals in this event," said Bukszowana.

Petriw came in 32nd and Harvey came in 40th.

In the afternoon of the second day, Dreyer and Barrault competed in the 200 Breast finals which they qualified for on the first day of competition.

"Amelia swam a slower first half of her race than in the heats but she had a much better second half but her total time was 0.76 seconds slower," said Bukszowana. "Amelia said after the race, 'I know I could have done it better at the start.'

"She was just holding back a little too much. But it is all a learning process for her. In the previous season, Amelia just qualified for this level meet for the first time and now she is finishing the 200 Breast in the 5th position."

Bukszowana said Dreyer's final race was an improvement upon her qualifying heats.

"Kassau had a better final race in general," said Bukszowana. "Her stroke looked better than in prelims, her splits were better and her breakouts were better too. She fixed everything that she could from the previous day and swam a little faster, finishing 14th.

"The rest of the WGB team stayed and watched the youngest girls. It was very good to see them supporting each other."

Both Dreyer and Barrault qualified for the 100 Breast final on the third day of competition. Barrault finishing seventh in the A final and Dreyer 15th in the B final.

The last event the swimmers competed in on day three of the meet was the 200 Free mixed relay. The team was made up of Kingscote, Dreyer, Petriw, and Harvey. They each swam 50 metres. Bukszowana said the team competed hard.

"Our team was fighting the best they could and finished 36th," said Bukszowana. "There was nothing more our swimmers could have done right now as a team to win a higher spot in B.C."

On Sunday, though none of the WGB made it to the finals, some new personal bests were swam.

"There were a few best times swam by Alex in the 200 Free, 50 Free, and 100 Back," said Bukszowana. "Amelia in the 200 IM and Kassau in the 200 IM, there was no second swim in the finals. All those athletes swam the fastest they could on that day. There is still a lot of room for improvement and a long way to catch the swimmers training in B.C."

Petriw raced to the 37th spot in the 200 Free and 27th in the 50 Free. In the 100 Back, he achieved 41st.

Barrault and Dreyer came in 32nd and 43rd respectively in the 200 IM.

In other races from the final day, Kingscote's unofficial result in the 100 Fly was 34th. She came in 36th in the 50 Free and 30th in the 100 Back.

Harvey came in 46th in the 200 Free but was disqualified from the 400 IM.

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