Glacier Bear swims to bronze at B.C. AAs

Whitehorse Glacier Bears swimmer Alex Petriw has the best kind of souvenir from his first B.C. championship: a medal.

Whitehorse Glacier Bears swimmer Alex Petriw has the best kind of souvenir from his first B.C. championship: a medal.

Petriw won a bronze in the 800-metre freestyle at the 2014 Swim B.C. Short Course AA Championships over the weekend in Chilliwack.

“I thought it was a good experience to go and I’m really glad that I went,” said Petriw. “I thought I did really well in the 800 free and was really happy to get that bronze medal. I thought that I deserved it.”

Petriw, who was competing in boys 11-and-under, took the bronze with a time of 12:22.97, shaving 38.09 seconds off his previous best.

“I made a mistake the first time that I had done it, so it was a big improvement because I didn’t do it this time and I got all the way through,” he said.

Petriw, who turned 11 in December, also claimed sixth in the 200-metre freestyle with a time of 2:45.40, slicing 1.17 second off his personal best.

In fact, the freestyle specialist set personal best times in every event he swam.

He also came 12th in the 50 free, 15th in the 100 free and 17th in the 400 free.

“It was a great time and I’m glad I went,” said Petriw. “It was really fun to go with my coach and one of my swim buddies.”

Buddy and Glacier Bears teammate Cassidy Cairns competed in the girls 11-and-under in Chilliwack.

Cairns raced to seventh in the 200-metre freestyle in a time of 2:44.47, cutting 2.94 seconds off her previous best.

“Alex and Cassidy swam very well on each day, improving their times in every race, but what’s more important is that they look better in the water with every meet we go to,” said Glacier Bears head coach Malwina Bukszowana in a news release.

Cairns also took 11th in the 200-metre individual medley, missing a final by just one second, but shaving off a huge 20.55 seconds from her previous best time.

The 11-year-old also came 10th in the 50 free and 13th in the 100 free.

“This was a weekend with few good lessons for both of them,” said Bukszowana. “Alex and Cassidy spend a lot of time together working on our small team-building spirit.

“They both were very well organized, and always ready for their races. Never complained, remembered their warm ups, their steps before each swim, and even were able to analyze some of their own races after they got out and they knew what we needed to work on. This is a great step and change in their young lives, preparing them for not an easy future, where they will need to think and care about themselves.”

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