Abbotsford Whalers swimmer Sarah Portas, shown here at the Whalers annual meet earlier this summer, had a great showing at the BCSSA provincials in Kamloops earlier this month.

Abbotsford Whalers swimmer Sarah Portas, shown here at the Whalers annual meet earlier this summer, had a great showing at the BCSSA provincials in Kamloops earlier this month.

Abbotsford Whalers excel at summer swimming provincials

Local swimmers take home handful of medals at year-end event in Kamloops

The Abbotsford Whalers Aquatic Club concluded its competitive season with success at the British Columbia Summer Swimming Association Provincials in Kamloops, which wrapped up on Aug. 18.

The water polo team opened the week-long competition with silver medals in the U18 and U16 categories and a bronze in the U14. Special accolades went to Whalers member Parker Forsberg as the winner of the Ethan Denum Sportsmanship award for his ability to overcome health challenges and help support his team.

The diving events opened after the conclusion of the water polo and, again, the Whalers didn’t disappoint. Athletes won medals at various age groups with dives from both the one- and three-metre boards. It was an impressive feat, since the athletes couldn’t train on a three-metre board in Abbotsford. Winners were: Maisie Buckton (gold, 8 and under girls), Emma Atsma (silver, 9/10 girls), Asher Duerksen (bronze, 9/10 boys), Zaid Ewert (silver, 13/14 boys), Kayla Ewert (silver, 15 and over girls open), and Blake Ewert (silver, 15 and over boys open).

Highlights from the three days of swimming included a record-breaking performance from Sarah Portas.

She swam the 100 metre breaststroke in 1:15.15, breaking the provincial record for her age group (division five) on her way to a gold medal. She also collected a bronze medal in the 200m individual medley.

Myrian Hickey won three medals – a gold in 50m freestyle and bronzes in both the 50m fly and 100m freestyle within the division four competition.

Portas and Hickey also teamed up with Kenna Johnson and Gabby Waddell to win a bronze in the 200m free relay and a silver in the 200m medley relay.

Abbotsford’s Aliyah Hickey also had a great weekend in division two competition with a silver medal in the 100m IM and a gold in the 50m backstroke.