SKA makes splash on Big Island

Swim Kaua‘i Aquatics returned from this past weekend’s Big Island meet with 18 individual champions in various events and a first finish in the 9-10 Boys 200 Free Relay.

That team consisted of Jackson Littlefield, Sean Holzman, Bryson Baligad and Rex Linthicum who joined the SKA contingent of 25 swimmers who participated in the Big Island Unclassified Meet at the swim complex on the campus of Kamehameha Schools in Keaau.

“We had an amazing trip,” said SKA head coach Greg Davis in a press release. “The facility was beautiful, the kids swam outstanding, and all the swimmers and parents enjoyed the meet immensely.”

Davis pointed out that 23 of the 25 SKA swimmers placed in the top ten in one or more events.

Two weeks ago, Meaghan Sims set six new lifetime best performances.

Swimming in the long course pool at Kamehameha-Big Island, Sims broke her own performance to set new personal standards in five of those six events.

Emma Rausch, 14, was 6-for-6 in setting lifetime best times while qualifying for the state meet in the 100 Free.

Tyson Chihara and Julian Schneider, swimming in the 17-18 age group, each earned four victories each.

Chihara earned first finishes in the 50, 100, and 200 Free events and the 200 Individual Medley. Schneider topped the 100 and 200 Breast, 200 Fly and 400 Individual Medley events.

Matt Ross and Ryann Linthicum took two top titles each, Ross taking the 100 and 200 Backstroke while Ryann topped the 200 and 400 Free events.

Anya Littlefield, 13, qualified for the state meet in the 400 and 800 Freestyle to join Emma in swimming multiple events at the upcoming state meet.

SKA swimmers earning individual titles on the Big Island include Bryson Baligad (9-10 200 IM), Rex Linthicum (8U 50 Breast), Littlefield (9-10 50 Free), Tania Rames (15-16 200 IM) and Kalena Wong (9-10 50 Back).

Matt Holzman emerged with four new HIAA standards in the 13-14 age group.

Davis said Nina Albano, Sophie Britzman, Sarah Faraola, Sean Holzman, Maliana Kaui, Nick Krueger, Makalii Pratt, Alanna Reynolds, Hunter Rogers, Kaitlyn Rogers, Sinead Sims and Kea Sullivan all had good swims and contributed to the team in the pool and on deck with team spirit.

“All of these swimmers should be very proud of themselves,” Davis said. “They swam fast and were all assets individually or on relays. Their team spirit was overflowing with excitement and support for their fellow team members.”

SKA’s next competition will be the Hawai‘i State Championships on June 7 to 10 on O‘ahu.

According to Davis, SKA has 14 swimmers qualified, 10 with one event or more.

Those scheduled to make the competition include Matt Ross, Chihara, Schneider, Ryann Linthicum, Littlefield, Rausch, Meaghan Sims, Alanna Rey-nolds, Albano, Faraola, Kiki Abrams, Kate Machorek, Michelle Woltmon and Russell McCluskey.

“This trip was everything we were looking for, and more,” said Davis. “Great pool, great competition, and most importantly, great team bonding. We are truly coming together as a team.”

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