The Columbia Hurricanes youth summer swim team defeated the Waterloo Piranhas at home on Saturday to end the regular season in style.
The Hurricanes improved to 5-1 on the season with the 367-196 victory.
“The kids did great on Saturday; a lot of personal bests and very proud of so many of the young swimmers swimming some strokes for the first time!” Hurricanes head coach Bart Jones said.
The Hurricanes have gained strength throughout the season, Jones said.
“These kids are making a lot of progress; more this year than in any year I can remember,” he said. “A lot of that is because of the number of kids we have swimming this year.
Columbia has more than 100 registered swimmers this season, swimming about 80 of them on most meets. Most of the swimmers this year are under the age of 10, Jones added.
“But we fill out all of our age groups pretty well and it makes for a lot of competition in each age group,” he said. “That competition pushes the swimmers to get better every week. The swimmers are really learning and showing great progress.”
The conference finals take place this weekend.
Jones said that in the ages 6 and under division, Teddy Jones, Maddox Bieber, Avery Frierdich, Arilyn Baker and Karis Baker have swam well.
In ages 8 and under, Max Rowan, Mason McConachie, Hudson Search, Rina Baker, Lucy Keeven and Alexandra Behrmann have performed well.
In ages 9-10, Jones pointed to Charlie Hake, Cooper Reuss, Anna Hornacek, Kaylea Bieber, Samantha Spruill and Holly Kurich.
In ages 11-12, Cole Galeski, Zane Ebersohl, Oscar Hoerr, Cadence Johnson, Olivia Reuss and Avery Gilpin have done well.
In ages 13-14, Alex Blum, Jason Hooser, Karsen Crook, Grace Galeski, Emily Buss, Grace Trowbridge and Alyse Dix have performed well.
In ages 15-18, Jones said Emily Buss, Reese Taylor, Kevin Flack, Joseph Hooser, Kaylum Furlow and Ryan Gallagher are the top swimmers.
Jones is assisted this summer by Kevin Flack and Connor Flack, two young men that swam for him at Waterloo and Columbia.
“They have been a great help,” he said.
For the much smaller Piranhas swim team, winners in Saturday’s meet included Max Meyers in boys ages 6 and under, Gracie Candrl in girls ages 6 and under, Wyatt Ebeler is boys ages 7-8, Reese Davis-Grandcolas in girls ages 8 and under, Sam Breitwiser in boys ages 9-10, Sydney Kuergeleis in girls ages 9-10, Calla Espenscheid in girls ages 10 and under, Ellie Ahne and Sophie Breitwiser in girls ages 11-12, and Kiara Lenhardt in girls ages 15 and under.