Kayla Scott, Rachael Barden, Olivia Howse, Leah Soetaert, Avery Sikkes, Grace Hayden, Ava Pollock Annis, Brock Tomlinson, Kiera Hansen, Holly Soetaert, Clodagh Dressler, Annika Fait, Riley Helgren, Maddox Johnson, Josie Howse, Lucy Staples, Nyah Shopland, Jarren Beck, Jackson Radkie, Charlie Staples, and Abbigail Wannamaker at the Canmore Pentathlon. Photo submitted

Elk Valley Dolphins wrap up a successful year

The Dolphins congratulate their 2019-2020 Swimmers of the Year

Wrapping up a short yet stellar season, the Elk Valley Dolphins Swim Club (EVDSC) recently announced their Swimmers of the Year.

At full capacity with 112 members aged seven to 66, EVDSC athletes broke over 150 club records this season. The team typically begins training in the middle of September, with junior athletes swimming until their final meet in April, and senior athletes training until Nationals in July. Though both competitions were cancelled due to the pandemic, two EVDSC swimmers qualified for the Swimming Canada Western Nationals, and eight athletes qualified for the Manitoba and Saskatchewan Provincial Championships.

With the season terminated, EVDSC celebrates their Swimmers of the Year. Recipients were selected in each competing age category, and are based off of seasonal event scores.

In order of age, EVDSC’s female Swimmers of the Year are Brody Dube, Avery Waswick, Zoey Waswick, Olivia Howse, Holly Soetaert, and Tatum Kipnik. This year’s male Swimmers of the Year are Matthew Cassidy, Benjamin Schmidt, Maddox Johnson, Riley Helgren, Luka Cigler, and Brock Tomlinson.

Though the season was cut short due to COVID-19, 24 EVDSC athletes have maintained an online training schedule. To upkeep their physical fitness, the swimmer’s training sessions have included virtual workouts and yoga classes. To assist swimmers mentally, a number of members tuned into a sports psychology seminar delivered by Canadian Olympian Chantal Van Landeghem, wherein she gave the athletes tips on how to remain positive and overcome challenges.

To further engage and support their membership throughout the pandemic, EVDSC coaches hosted a virtual presentation night on May 20 for both athletes and their families. On the evening of the event, over 100 members dressed up according to the ‘under the sea’ theme, as Vogue Theatre delivered popcorn and treats to each of the participating families.

“Our main focus at the moment is to keep the athletes connected, positive, and happy during this time because everyone feels distant at the moment, so we are trying to keep that connection between the athletes, and keep our community going,” said head coach Aidan Chudleigh.

Despite current challenges, EVDSC looks forward to an exciting and prosperous 2020-2021 season.


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