The Highlands Hurricanes (HHST) and Lake Placid Aquatics (LPA) swim teams competed in the Gulf Coast Swim Team Invitational at Florida Gulf Coast University on July 6. Out of 10 teams representing over 200 swimmers from the South Florida area, HHST and LPA had 17 total swimmers competing, with 12 from the Hurricanes and 5 from LPA. Both teams are made up of kids from Lake Placid, Sebring, Avon Park, Lorida, and Wauchula.
Swimming in a 50-meter long, Olympic-size pool, competitors aged from 9 to 20 years old. Both teams combined to have 13 swimmers finish with top eight times.
HHST had two swimmers finish in first place. Shannon Cummings, 20, won the 100 butterfly with a time of 01:16.02 in the female 15 and over age group while Mason Million, 14, finished first in both the 100 and 50-meter backstrokes with a time of 1:23.15 and 00:38.97, respectively, in the male 13-14 age group. Cummings' time was good for an 18.74 second improvement.
Meanwile, LPA also had a swimmer take the top spot in the butterfly. Tyler Pollard, 13, won the 50 butterfly with a time of 00:56.39 in the male 13-14 age group.
Cummings also had a second-place finish in the 50 freestyle with a time of 00:30.27. Pollard's next-best finish was fourth-place, where he finished in the 50 backstroke with a time of 00:49.94.
A host of other swimmers from both teams also finished with top eight times. Andrew Brown, 15, Griffin Chynoweth, 13, Zach Geitner, 12, Logan Million, 12, Peyton Ming, 10, Seth Moon, 12, Sanhitha Raghuveera, 13, Anna Sapp, 11, and Clara Simpson, 14, all finished fourth or higher in at least one race.
Ming was especially productive. Competing in four different events in the male 10 and under group, he placed no lower than third. He finished second in the 50 butterly fly and freestyle with times of 00:40.42 and 00:36.72, respectively, and completed the 100 butterfly with a time of 1:41.86.
Chynoweth and Brown also competed in four events. Chynoweth's best finish was in the male 13-14 50 freestyle, where he came in second with a time of 00:31.12, while Brown's best finish came in the male 15 and over 200 backstroke and breaststroke. He finished second in both, with times of 2:31.96 and 2:50.61, respectively.
Zander Bogaret, 12, rounded out the top eight finishes for LPA. He came in fourth in both the 50 and 100 breaststroke in the male 11-12 age group with times of 00:48.65 and 1:45.80, respectively.
The next meet on the schedule for both HHST and LPA is the Lake Placid Aquatics Invitational. It will be held today at Lake Placid High School from 8 a.m. to noon.
Anyone interested in joining HHST or simply wanting to more information is encouraged to call coach Marvin Wolfe at (863) 382-9272.