13 December 2015
It was 2008 when swimming last featured in the Pacific School Games but it was back with a vengeance as the 2015 School Sport Australia Swimming Nationals were combined with 9 different sports and over 3,000 athletes in the Pacific School Games held in Adelaide from 20th – 28th November.
Four Flyers' swimmers Samantha Howe, Roman Nestoriwskyj, Jackson Lazzar & Brayden Miles were selected to represent Team Victoria competing against all States & Territories of Australia as well as athletes from countries including China, Fiji, New Zealand, Macau, India, Pakistan and New Zealand.
Months of build up to the games culminated in a hectic week for the swimmers that included the opening ceremony and athlete’s parade at the Adelaide showgrounds, group excursions and team dinners and of course a heavy schedule of swimming in both individual and relay events. The Flyers swimmers adopted the spirit of the games, embraced their teammates and competitors and did the club proud with multiple PB’s, club records and a combined medal tally of (8) 2 x gold, 2 x silver and 4 x bronze.
Sam Howe (16 girls) must have thought she was in the old goldfields of the Barossa not the SA Aquatic Centre as she dominated the blue riband Freestyle events swimming PB’s and winning Gold in the 50m (26:57) & 100m (57:73). Sam backed this up with PB’s in the 50 Fly (8th) and 50 Back (4th) and anchored the 200m freestyle relay home to a bronze medal. Sam a mainstay of the VIC’s also managed to be adopted by the Fiji team as an honorary Fijian, though her medal haul outstripped that of the whole team from the South Pacific archipelago.
Roman Nestoriwskyj (16 boys) swam a PB in the 50 Breast (32:31) to just miss a place in the final and again just fell short of the top ten in the 100 breast & 200 Breast. A PB in the 50 back (29:34) saw Roman make the final finishing in 9th place in a very competitive field of swimmers. Roman also swam in 4 Team VIC relays.
Jackson Lazzar (13 boys) was at his best with PB’s and top ten placings in all of his age group individual events. Jackson won Bronze in the 100m Back (1:06:11) and was touched out of a further Bronze in the 50 Back (4th) by the narrowest of margin .01 of a second. Other impressive results included 8th in the 100 Fly (1:06:48) and 9th in the 200IM (2:26:02). Jackson competed in five relays and capped off a fine week with a Bronze in the 400m freestyle relay.
Brayden Miles (11 boys) the youngest of the Flyers swimmers had a big week swimming PB’s in all his individual events and winning silver in the 100 back (1:10:63), silver in the 50 Back (32:17) and Bronze in the 50 Fly (30:92). Brayden narrowly missed a medal in the 100 Fly (1:10:26) and was 6th in the 100 Free and 9th in the 50 Free. Brayden also swam in 5 Team Vic relays.
The sportsmanship, atmosphere, friendships and tough competition made it a week to remember for the four Flyers Swimmers who competed, let’s hope they back up the performance and produce more PB’s at the upcoming Victorian State Age Championships.
(Thanks to Lance Miles for reporting back from PSG and to the parents for providing pictures)