Flying Fish finish strong at City Swim Meet
Sometimes, like the song said, change would do you good.
Just ask the Coastal Carolina Aquatic Association, which held its 50th annual City Swim Meet this past weekend. Because of bad weather the past few years, the association changed the starting time of the final day of the three-day event to morning rather than mid-afternoon. That change paid dividends Sunday. Just as the meet was concluding, nasty storms hit the Lowcountry. But the meet wasn’t affected, as it finished up as the thunder, lightning and rain arrived.
“The threat of thunderstorms was a concern and that’s why they moved the starting time,” said Daniel Island Flying Fish Coach Rose Van Metre. “Last year was horrible. I couldn’t get out of the car because of the storms. To make matters worse, Sunday is when the older kids swim and at least half of them drive to the meet, so I was fearful. We were hoping to get the meet in earlier in the day, and what happened Sunday was apropos.”
There was thunder and lightning – and plenty of rain. But Snee Farm and the Flying Fish provided the fireworks. Snee Farm won the 17-team event, which was contested at Goose Creek. Daniel Island captured second place and Northbridge was third. Coosaw Creek was fourth, Hobcaw fifth and Newington claimed sixth.
It was a step up the ladder for the Flying Fish, a team that finished third last year.
“I’m ecstatic,” Van Metre said of the finish. “I knew we had a strong team because of how well we did in the dual meets this season. We beat Coosaw and we don’t usually do that. We always hoped for second place, but you never know. This year, it finally happened.”
The team collected gold in numerous races and set meet records.
The boys’ 9-10 freestyle relay captured first place. Members of the team included Matthew Doty, Weston Moldenhauer, Spencer Thompson and Aidan Lentsch.
The girls’ 9-10 freestyle relay team set a record. Members of the team included Merritt Zieminick, Mallory Kowalski, Ellie Chalupsky and Berkleigh Hatch.
Van Metre was happy with the talented efforts. But she was just as proud of the team because of the way the swimmers conducted themselves. The Flying Fish also received the “Sportsmanship Award,” which was voted on by the other teams in the league.
“That makes me so happy,” Van Metre said. “You develop good sportsmanship early in life and it helps you along the way.”
Van Metre had praise for four seniors on the team. Ben Kramer, who has been on the team for 12 years, is matriculating to Michigan State. Millie Noury will attend the College of Charleston, while Bridget Conley will enroll at Vanderbilt. Finally, Aaron DeJager will attend the University of Alabama – Huntsville.
More than 200 youths were members of the Flying Fish. Some members attended Bishop England and some went to Hanahan. But it truly was a neighborhood team.
“It was a memorable year,” Van Metre said. “What we accomplished at the City Meet will make those memories last a little longer.”