Ibanez leads Mokihana on Maui

Nevaeh Ibanez, 10, was one of three Mokihana Aquatics swimmers at the 41st annual Coach Soichi Sakamoto Invitational Long Course Meet on Maui, which wrapped up Sunday.

Ibanez, swimming in 10 events, posted her best swim in the 100 breaststroke, emerging with a state qualifying time standard of 1 minute, 44.80 seconds and seventh place in the field. She also posted a 1.26-second improvement over her previous best time to lead the Kauai field at the long course meet.

Mokihana Aquatics swimmers workout in the Kapaa Pool — considered a short course — so competing in the long course is a new experience to many of the swimmers.

“Fun is the most important thing about swimming,” said Mokihana Aquatics coach Orlando “O” Anaya. “This weekend was good. The Sakamoto meet on Maui is always fun for our swimmers. Tyler, Nevaeh, and Kamaira swam with determination and grit in this 50-meter long course meet.”

Ibanez went on to finish with two other personal best swims, the 100 freestyle (1:25.28) for a .84-second improvement, and the 50 freestyle (27.34) where she was faster by .62 second, both events earning her HIAA time standards.

“Our swimmers swam better on Saturday than on Sunday and made some best times,” Anaya said. “But they may have been tired the second day. Overall, it was a good learning experience and they all became better for that.”

Kamaira Silva, 10, worked through four events, her best swim coming in the 100 freestyle (1:23.92) where she posted a .36 improvement in her HIAA swim.

Tyler Tanaka, 10, posted two personal bests. His best showing coming in the 100 freestyle (1:29.74) where he posted a 2.67 improvement and a HIAA time standard. He also was 1.42 faster in the 50 freestyle (39.5) with another HIAA time standard.

Mokihana Aquatics will host its time trials with distance events Friday and Saturday at the Kapaa Pool with warm up swims starting at 4:30 p.m. Friday.

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