The Sedona Swordfish swim team has returned to the competition circuit, most recently competing at the Candy Cane Classic at the Phoenix Country Day School Aquatics Center from Friday, Dec. 8, to Sunday, Dec. 10.
Claiming top finishes in the races themselves was not the main concern, as the team is building toward qualification to the upcoming short course regional and state meets. Many of the swimmers have aged up into an older division, making the time standards harder to achieve.
“We want to make sure we improve every chance we get, first, second, third [place] is secondary as long as we improve,” Swordfish head coach A. Jay Bronson said. “The kids who dropped time, we’re happy about. Others like Zach and Dezra Dana, we worked on some issues, mechanics.”
Twelve-year-old Bryce Kirk qualified for the finals in five events while 15-year-old Andrew Tate made it in three.
Kirk’s highest placing was eighth place in the 100-yard individual medley [1:27.72]. He took 17th in the 200-yard freestyle [2:45.12], qualifying 18th, but taking one place higher despite adding six seconds from his preliminary time.
It was the second competition a Swordfish swimmer has competed in since the high school season ended. Tate, who just completed his freshman season at Sedona Red Rock High School, also went to the IMX Xtreme Games from Nov. 17 to 19.
At the IMX Games, which featured swimmers from 10 states around the country, he competed in six events in the 15-year-old category.
There were only eight swimmers in each of the races, his lowest finish being fifth in the 200-yard backstroke [2:20.78].
Tate’s best finishes were second place in the 200 breaststroke [2:28.42] and 500-yard freestyle [5:15.08]. He was third in the 400-yard individual medley [4:40.69] and fourth in the 200 butterfly [2:15.49] and 200-yard individual medley [2:13.82].
Candy Cane Classic Results
Bryce Kirk, 11- to 12-year-old boys
100-yard individual medley, Eighth
Andrew Tate, 13 and over boys
200-yard butterfly, Fifth
200-yard breaststroke, Eighth
400-yard individual medley, 18th