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Swimming: Kona Aquatics shines in long course event

July 22, 2014 - 6:20am

Kona Aquatics had three winners and finished sixth in the team standings at the Hawaii long course swimming championships last weekend at Veterans Memorial Aquatic Center in Honolulu.

“For as small of a group as we had (the team did well),” coach Steve Borowski said. “We focused not on team points, but how each individual kid sets their own goals for each event that they swim.”

Maile Lawson led the way for Kona Aquatics with four medals in the girls 11-12 division. She captured first place in the 100- and 200-meter breaststroke, claimed second in the 50 breaststroke and third in the 200 individual medley.

“That was probably the highlight of the meet,” Borowski said, noting that Lawson was seeded fifth in the breaststroke events and 10th in the individual medley. “She just swam fantastic.”

Cara Jernigan, a Kealakehe graduate who plans to swim for the University of Idaho, won the girls 17-18 200 breaststroke in her final race as an 18-year-old, finished second in the 200 individual medley and took third in the 100 breaststroke.

“As the meet went on, she just seemed to get stronger,” Borowski said. “It was great.”

Borowski said she was trying to lower her times again after a trip to New Zealand last month, where she represented Team Hawaii in a big meet.

Duke Becker, a 9-year-old, claimed a pair of silver medals in the boys 10-and-under division, finishing second in the 50 breaststroke and the 100 breaststroke.

Kai Griley finished second in the boys 10-and-under 100 butterfly and third in the 100 backstroke.

Madeline Foo took third place in the girls 15-16 200-meter breaststroke.

“It was a real fun meet and a lot of personal-best times,” Borowski said. “It’s an exhausting four days of 12-hour days out in the sun.”

Hilo’s Hawaii Island Swim Club brought home five medals, all courtesy of Raven Domingo. Competing in the girls 10-and-under division, she captured three silvers (50 freestyle, 100 freestyle, 200 freestyle) and two bronze (50 backstroke, 100 backstroke).

Drew Holloway delivered a first-place performance for the Warrior Aquatic Club, located in Keaau. Holloway won the boys 17-18 1,500 freestyle.

Ryan Bisel finished third in the 200-meter backstroke of the boys 17-18 division while Brooks Taylor claimed the 100-meter backstroke bronze in the girls 15-16 age group.

Hilo Aquatic Club had two silver medalists — Shea Tsuha in the girls 13-14 100-meter breaststroke and Bodhi Whitmore in the boys 11-12 200 backstroke.

The Kona Dolphins and Liquid Aloha Aquatics clubs also competed in the event but did not have a top-three finisher.