In only two years of existence, the Sea Colony Sharks swim team placed 11th overall and first in their division in the Delmarva Swimming Championship, at the Mid-Shore YMCA in Salisbury, Md. on July 30.
Last year they finished in 17th place and third in their division out of 24 teams, but this year 20-year swim coach veteran, Donna Smith made some changes in hopes of placing higher.
“Only 17 kids qualified for individuals and 35 qualified for relays, so I registered for more relays because they carry more points,” said Smith.
“It’s great to see the commitment of the parents to drive their kids to Salisbury and get there by 7 a.m. to be part of a relay — it’s really a team effort,” continued Smith.
The Delmarva Swim Association currently has 25 teams in their league and within that league there are three divisions: red, white and blue.
The Sea Colony swim team started competing in the white division, which happens to be the beginner level of competition. This year they were still in the white division, but have made drastic improvements and are on the road to building a successful swimming program.
“In a couple years, we’ll be a dynamic swim team if our kids stick with the program,” said Smith. “Right now we have quality swimmers — we need some more quantity.”
Smith credits her team’s success to the commitment made by her swimmers and their parents.
More than 90 area swimmers have put the pedal to the medal to become better swimmers by enrolling not only in the summer program, but in the winter, as well.
The winter program is taught by Middlesex lifeguard Captain Colin Crandle and Audrey Fisher, and the extra instruction apparently has paid off.
“Parents rave about the mechanical swimming instruction that their kids receive from Colin — he’s really a great coach and has a great staff,” said Smith. “He’s able to break it down for them.”
Last year the Sea Colony swim team didn’t win a meet, instead going 0-7, but this season they have closed the gap and are beginning to give teams a run for their money. They lost to Lake Forest’s swim team by 11 points and to Lewes Yacht Club by about 30 points.
“You can see the improvement since last year, and we’re getting closer to winning some dual meets,” said Smith. “We need to fill out the rest of the age groups to continue to grow as a team.”
Smith currently has a plethora of talented swimmers ages 10 and under down to 6 and under, but they still need older swimmers, especially boys. Sea Colony offers six age groups ranging from 6 and under all the way up to 15-18 years old.
“A lot a kids go in the ocean, but the ocean or the bay isn’t always conducive for endurance swimming, so parents are enrolling their kids in our program so that they will be able to swim in the ocean,” said Smith.
Smith noted that joining the swim team now helps prepare those who are interested in life guarding and said that she has seen participants from past swim programs guarding local beaches.
“I’ll see kids I coached in the past life guarding up at Rehoboth, Sea Colony and Bethany, and the swim program gave them the strength and endurance to guard,” said Smith.
“Also, swimming complements other sports as well. My daughter (age 9) plays softball and also swims, and she can throw a ball from third base to first with no problem,” continued Smith. “It’s a total-body workout and in three months you can see a huge difference.”
The swimmers parents have been a driving force behind the growing success of the Sea Colony swim program. Parents have devoted their time and energy to not only enroll their kids in this activity but also help run it.
“Swimming isn’t like a baseball game that you can just watch 90 percent of the parent’s volunteer to help run the events as stroke-and-turn officials, timers, starters and referees. Nine parents took a clinic in their spare time after a long day of work to become officials,” said Smith.
“It really touches your heart to know that parents are willing to take the extra time to help get this program off the ground. They are willing to do what it takes for their kids, and I think that is reflective of this community,” added Smith.
8&U Women 100-yard free relay
Rylie Doyle, Zoe Richard, Carrie Lee, Maggie Allison
2nd in Division 3rd Overall 1:21:97
8&U Mens 100-yard free relay
Merrick Kovatch, Austin Gilner, cole Haden Joseph Pavelick
1st in Division 1:28:07
Womens 9-10 100-yard free relay
Ellie Glasgow, Rebecca Webb, Kirsten Goodman, Ragen Doyle
3rd in division 1:09:67
Men 9-10 100-yard free relay
Ben Boonin, Richard D’Onofrio, Ryan Nally, Zachary Richard
4th in division
Women 9-10 100-yard medley relay
(Back Kirsten Goodman, Breast Delaney McMullen, Fly Karlie Smith, Free Ragen Doyle)
4th in division 1:21:84
Men 9-10 100-yard medley relay
(Back Ben Boonin, Breast Richard D’Onofrio, Fly Zachary Richard, Free Conner Nally)
4th in division 1:50:13
Women 9-10 butterfly
Ragen doyle — 5th in division 18:78
Women 8&U 25-yard backstroke
Carrie Lee 2nd in division 22.44 (first year swimmer)
Maggie Allison 9th in division 24.20
Rylie Doyle 12th in division 25.39
Women 8 & U 25-yard breaststroke
Maggie Allison 3rd in div. 24.43
Zoe Richard 7th in div. 27.12
Carrie Lee 8th in div.30.46
Men 8 &U 25-yard breaststroke
Merrick Kovatch 3rd in div. 25.22
Women 9-10 25-yard breaststroke
Delaney McMullen 3rd in div. 21.25
Karlie Smith 5th in div. 21.49
Women 8 & U 25-yard free
Rylie Doyle 1st in division 17.72
Women 10 & U 25-yard free
Ragen Doyle 3rd in division 15.38
PM Session DSA Swim Championships 11-12 , 13-14, 15-18
Women 11-12 200-yard free relay
Jenna Rupp, Samantha Treuting, Brina Mahoney, Hannah Nyberg 1st in division
Men 11-12 200-yard free relay
Zachary Pardes, Marquise Hofmann, Sam Boonin, Michael Lattanzi 2nd in division
Women 13-14 200-yard free relay
Kate Hickman, Alex West, Megan Lou Lou, Maria Smith 4th in division
Men 13-14 200-yard free relay
James Mahoney, Ethan Nyberg, Alexander Pardes, Josh Robbins 1st in Division
Women 11-12 200-yard medley relay
Back Hannah Nyberg, Breast Brina Mahoney, Fly Samantha Treuting, Free Jenna Rupp
Men 11-12 200-yard medley relay
Back Zachary Pardes, Breast Marquise Hofmann, Fly Michael Lattanzi, Free Sam boonin
1st in division
Men 13-14 200-yard medley relay
Back Ethan Nyberg, Breast Josh Robbins, Fly James Mahoney, Free Alexander Pardes
1st in division 2:14:60
Women 11-12 50-yard butterfly
Samantha Treuting 8th in division
Men 13-14 50-yard butterfly
James Mahoney 1st in division and 1st overall 28.18
Women 11-12 50-yard backstroke
Hannah Nyberg 1st in division and 1st overall 31.52
Brina Mahoney 4th in division 38.30
Men 13-14 50-yard backstroke
Ethan Nyberg 2nd in division 34.00
Men 15-18 50-yard backstroke
Tommy Glasgow 2nd in division 32.05
Women 11-12 50-yard breaststroke
Samantha Treuting 9th in division 42.84
Brina Mahoney 10th in division 42.87
Mens 13-14 50-yard breaststroke
Josh Robbins 2nd in division
Womens 11-12 50-yard freestyle
Hannah Nyberg 1st in division, 2nd overall 27.87
Jenna Rupp 4th in division 31.88
Men 11-12 50-yard freestyle
Dillon Thune 2nd in division 31.46
Men 13-14 50-yard freestyle
James Mahoney 1st in division 1st overall 25.26
Men 15-18 50-yard freestyle
Tommy Glasgow 2nd div. 26.63
Women 11-12 100-yard individual medley
Jenna Rupp 6th in division 1.25.57