YMCA swim team wraps up record-breaking youth swim season

Online Staff Report

The YMCA of Rock River Valley RAYS wrapped up a record-breaking youth swim season in March, with impressive performances at Northwest District and Jr. District YMCA championships (March 2-3 at Illinois Valley YMCA) and Illinois/Missouri Area YMCA championships (March 16-17 at Kishwaukee YMCA).

The RAYS sent 80 swimmers ages 6-19 to District Championships, where they competed against nine local YMCA teams. Overall, the RAYS 9-10 Girls placed first and the 8 & Under Girls took second. The RAYS 13-14 Girls took home a third-place trophy, as did the RAYS 15 & Up Girls. A new Northwest District record time of 2:16.71 was set by the RAYS 9-10 Girls 200-yard Medley Relay Team consisting of Grace Pidde, Sophie Bergsten, Kaylee Witte and Nhia Caras.

Two weeks later, 30 swimmers represented the RAYS at Area Championships in which 67 swim teams from five YMCA districts competed. Four individual RAYS (Bergsten, Caras, Leah Boccignone and Camden Taylor) and two relay teams placed within the top eight in event finals. The RAYS 9-10 Girls took fourth place overall in age group scoring.

I am so proud of all the best times achieved, long-standing records broken and outstanding sportsmanship these young athletes have shown,” said RAYS Head Coach Liz Grace, herself a RAYS swimmer for 11 years.

Competing at area championships marked the conclusion of the RAYS 2012-13 fall/winter swim season. The RAYS will kick off their summer competition season May 6. Swimmers ages 5-21 interested in joining the team can attend Rookie Week April 29-May 2 at the I.D. Pennock YMCA, where they will have the opportunity to meet the coaches and work on technique drills. Swimmers of all abilities — from novice to national competitor — are welcome.

Visit www.rockriverymca.org/stingrays for more information or e-mail Grace at LGrace@rockriverymca.org.

Posted April 24, 2013

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