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Strong showing by PHAST swimmers in hometown meet

Matthew Penner earned the meet’s male bronze medal for high points scorer during the Juniors - Spring Edition - Provincial Championships, June 8 to 10, in Antigonish.
Matthew Penner earned the meet’s male bronze medal for high points scorer during the Juniors - Spring Edition - Provincial Championships, June 8 to 10, in Antigonish. - Richard MacKenzie

ANTIGONISH, N.S. - The Port Hawkesbury Antigonish Swim Team (PHAST) hosted 170 swimmers from 10 teams across the province, June 8 to 10, for the Juniors - Spring Edition - Provincial Championships.

Team organizers noted St. F.X. provided the “perfect venue, with an ‘athlete’s village’ residence setting, and phenomenal recreation staff.”

After the three days of competition, PHAST secured fourth overall for the meet.

“The weekend went very well … a lot of positives,” PHAST coach Rob Allen, said, talking to the Casket immediately after the final event.

“This wrapped up a long 10-month season for a lot of these kids so, by-and-large, very happy with their performances. If not best-times, in-season best times … very good standards were achieved this weekend.”

Allen said it was nice to play host to the meet and that, no doubt, played a role in strong swims by the team.

“This is rare occasion to have a major meet where you can wake up in your own bed, stay at home, eat your own food … it means a lot,” he said. “It’s your own pool, you’re used to the lane ropes, the walls, ceiling… it’s an advantage when you’re in the water as much as we are. I think that played a part but the physical training was the other piece which worked well for the squad.”

PHAST results included:

Mariah Austen swam to 7th in the 50m and 5th in the 200m backstroke.

Elena Barzanti took 4th in the 800m freestyle and 50m butterfly, 3rd in the 200m backstroke, 2nd in the 50 and 100m freestyle, and 1st in the 200m freestyle.

Cole Beaver stroked to 4th in the 100m backstroke.

Baileigh Bekkers swam to 8th in the 400m freestyle.

Emma Crispo stroked to 8th in the 100m breaststroke.

Joshua Elsworth powered to 4th in the 50m backstroke and 100m freestyle, 3rd in 50m freestyle, 2nd in the 200m I.M. and 1st in 200m and 400m freestyle, setting a new team record.

Zachary Elsworth took 7th in the 50m and 200m freestyle, 4th in the 200m I.M., and 50m breaststroke.

Meghan Hayes stroked to 7th in the 50m backstroke, 6th in the 100m freestyle, 5th in the 50m and 2nd in the 100m butterfly.

Cora Kehoe took 5th in the 100m freestyle.

Cein Kennedy swam to 6th in the 50m breaststroke, 4th in the 200m freestyle and 200m I.M., 3rd in the 50m freestyle, 2nd in the 50m backstroke, and 1st in the 200m backstroke.

Olivia Langley stroked to 6th in the 200m breaststroke, and 5th in the 50 M breaststroke.

Jessica MacKinnon took 4th in the 100m and 50m freestyle, 2nd in the 50m and 200m backstroke and 1st in the 100m backstroke.

Colleen MacLeod powered to a 5th in the 4th in the 200m freestyle and 50m backstroke, 2nd in the 50m breaststroke, and 1st in the 50 and 100m freestyle, earning the meet’s female bronze medal for high points scorer.

Illness kept Alex Penner from the first two days of competition, but did not slow him down when he arrived, taking 1st in the 50m butterfly.

Matthew Penner earned the meet’s male bronze medal for high points scorer with a 4th in the 50m fly and 1st place finishes in the 200, 100, and 50m breaststroke, and 200m I.M.

In relay action, the men’s squads took home a 5th, 4th, 2nd and two 1st place finishes.

Ali McLellan and Lily MacLean helped the women’s squads secure a 6th, two 4ths, a 2nd and a 1st place finish.

PHAST expressed appreciation to all the local businesses who donated products, volunteers who worked throughout the weekend, and the teams who competed.

They also noted it was an honour to have Antigonish Mayor Laurie Boucher open the meet with words of welcome, and St. F.X. director of athletics, Leo MacPherson, “give the swimmers an inspirational challenge to excellence.”

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