Several area swimmers are competing at the National YMCA Swim Championships being held in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., at the International Swimming Hall of Fame aquatic facility. The racing began Wednesday and concludes Sunday.
In Wednesday’s racing, James Wells of the Bath YMCA finished second in the 100-yard backstroke in 47.9 seconds, three-tenths off the first-place time. Wells, who will be swimming at Indiana University next year, finished third in the 50 free in 20.75, a fraction from the winning time of 20.3.
Wells also swam the opening leg, the backstroke (22.6), on the Bath YMCA 200 medley, a 16th-place finisher at 1:37.3.
Joey Quinn, swimming for the Bangor YMCA in the 50 free (22.8), finished 18th. Quinn was a member of coach Phil Emery’s state champion Bangor High team.
Chelsey Curran, who swam so successfully during the interscholastic season for Mount Desert High, recorded a 25.8 in the 50 free to finish 30th.
Other local swimmers entered in the national competition include: Ian Carbone, MDI YMCA, Alice Ruiu, Bangor YMCA, Lauren Dwyer and Mariah Reading, Canoe City Swim Club of the Old Town- Orono YMCA and Travis Dennison, Keith Chandler and Cecelia McEachern, Downeast East YMCA of Ellsworth.
Participants at the national meet will have the opportunity to meet past Olympians, including 1992 gold medalist Mel Stewart along with Jesse Vassello and two-time Olympian Ryan Lochte.
Tenth title for Texas
Benjamin Disraeli’s quote, “the secret of success is constancy to purpose,” could be applied to coach Eddie Reese, whose Texas Longhorns won the 2009-10 NCAA Division I men’s swimming and diving championship, the 10th national swim title for Texas.
Reese, with this year’s Longhorn win, became the first coach in the history of NCAA Division I swimming to win national titles in four decades. Actually, the Longhorns trailed California by 15 points entering the final day of racing, but were able to use their depth to overtake the Bears for the team crown.
Colby gains academic honor
The American College Swimming Coaches Association has recognized both the Colby College men’s and women’s swim teams as Scholar Athlete All-American teams. The White Mule men’s swim team grade point average of 3.4 and the women’s average of 3.1 earned Colby swimming the distinction.