Sports

University of Victoria swimmers take to podium

University of Victoria Vikes swimmer Stephanie Horner churns through the water at a recent meet. Horner, a fourth-year Vikes swimmer, was among the UVic contingent who qualified for the CIS nationals with their performances at last weekend’s Canada West championships in Calgary. - Photo by Armando Tura/courtesy University of Victoria
University of Victoria Vikes swimmer Stephanie Horner churns through the water at a recent meet. Horner, a fourth-year Vikes swimmer, was among the UVic contingent who qualified for the CIS nationals with their performances at last weekend’s Canada West championships in Calgary.
— image credit: Photo by Armando Tura/courtesy University of Victoria

At least three University of Victoria swimmers are looking ahead to next month’s CIS nationals in Toronto after posting five medal-winning times at the Canada West Swimming Championships at the University of Calgary last weekend.

Among the Vikes making a splash at the competition was first-year UVic swimmer Jon McKay (Reynolds secondary), who medalled on the opening day with a second-place finish in the men’s 1,500-metre freestyle. His time of 15 minutes, 29.61 seconds, put him just behind winner Jonathan Brown of UBC (15:27.04).

Keegan Zanatta (Claremont) earned the team’s second medal on the second day of competition, a gold in the men’s 200-metre freestyle in a time of 1:47.62.

The final day of competition proved to be the highlight of the weekend for the Vikes, as they added three more medals to their haul.

Two-time Canadian Olympic team member Stephanie Horner (Beaconsfield, Que.) won gold for the women’s team, finishing the 200-metre butterfly in 2:13.32, and also took home a bronze in the 4x100m relay.

Zanatta won his second medal of the weekend on Sunday, taking bronze in the 200-metre butterfly.

UBC was the big winner on the weekend on the women’s side, setting a conference team record with 1,017 points overall, nearly 500 points ahead of second-place Calgary. UVic finished fifth with 272.5.

The men’s team competition proved closer, with UBC taking top spot with 941 points. UVic was fourth place with 398, missing out on the podium finish by just six points behind the University of Alberta.

Swimmers qualify for Canadian Inter-University Sport nationals based on their times, meaning even those who don’t earn medals can still find themselves competing in the championships.

One thing that didn’t go swimmingly for the Vikes was their flight home Sunday night, which was turned around at the Victoria International Airport due to fog and rerouted all the way back to Calgary.

The nationals go Feb. 20 to 22 at the University of Toronto.

kwells@goldstreamgazette.com

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