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As a noun, Webster defines fun as something or someone that is amusing or enjoyable. For Mary and I, our time over the past five days at a swim meet in San Antonio was both. The USMS Nationals meet, held at the brand new Northside Aquatics Center (see photo), a facility similar to the one we envision for Davis, was one of the best Masters' meets we've ever attended. The whole event dripped with Southern hospitality and humidity. Despite back-to-back nights of the biggest, baddest lightening storms we've ever seen, the days were warm and perfect for fast racing. Meets like this start with nervous energy and anticipation, and end with hugs and pats on the back. Everyone representing the DAM team (see photo) had their moment(s) in the sun...and had fun doing it. Though we had different goals, we all represented the best DAM team at the meet. You could tell who we were from the the same shirt the ten of us wore for four straight days.
Some of the fun of being with 1,880 other swimmers, was seeing old friends and making new ones; being awed by a 98 year old woman's 1:07 50 free; watching USA Olympians competing and enjoying their USMS experiences; and mainly cheering on our DAM teammates. There was a lot to celebrate, especially on Sunday, the fourth day of the meet. Nine DAM swimmers turned in at least one personal best time, but all ten had fun.
The team set 13 individual team records and one relay. Sarah Hernandez (30) led the way with six 1st place finishes and seven team records. Mary Kahn (55) set new team standards in four individual events and one relay. Andy McPherson (67) and Cecily Sprouse (58) each broke one individual record and combined with Mary and Stu to set a new record in the 55+ 200 Free Relay.
Our club finished in 40th place with 141 points. (Last year in Santa Clara, the DAM team of 89 swimmers was third with 1,027 points, a score that would have been third again this year.)
Here are the DAM point scorers and a list of new team records and placings.
Sarah Hernandez – 64 points
Leslie Westergaard (72) – 27 points
Matt Roper (34) – 19 pts
Andy McPherson (67) – 16 pts
Mel Belluomni (37) – 5 pts
Mary Kahn (55) -3pts
Kris Hornoff (67) – 1pt
200 F.R. – 6pts
Sarah Hernandez - 50 free 23.43 (leadoff split); 100 free 51.13 (1); 50 back 26.49 (1); 100 back 57.31 (1), 50 fly 25.78 (2), 100 fly 56.75 (1), 100 IM 58.66 (1).
Mary Kahn – 200 free 2:25.87 (11); 50 back 34.15 (8), 100 back 1:14.91 (13); 200 back 2:45.62 (12).
Cecily Sprouse – 50 brst 41.04 (14).
Andy McPherson – 100 free 56.51 (4)
Kahn, Kahn, Sprouse, McPherson – 55+ 200 F.R. 1:54.02 (8)
April 6, 2015
The short course yards championships for Pacific Masters Swimming are being held this weekend at Campolindo HS in Moraga. DAM is sending a squad of 36 swimmers and will compete in the medium-size team division. The next local pool meet is the long course championships taking place July 24-26 in San Jose. With these two big meets on the horizon, we wanted to introduce and highlight the role that Pacific Masters Swimming plays in our sport.
Pacific Masters, a subordinate organization of the United States Masters Swimming (USMS) corporation, is, along with the other forty-nine Local Masters Swim Committees (LMSC's), charged with supervisory responsibilities within a specific geographical territory. That territory, ranging from the Oregon border to mid-Nevada and south to Fresno, encompasses nearly one-fifth of all registered swimmers in the country. Last year, our LMSC was home to 11,887 USMS members, and DAM was again the largest club in Pacific Swimming with 710 swimmers.
USMS originated at a single swimming meet of 46 swimmers in 1970 and has now grown to nearly 60,000 registered swimmers. Taking his cue from that first meet, Mike Milliman from Walnut Creek (and coincidentally Stu's age group coach at the time) hosted the second-ever masters meet three months later, that drew 60 swimmers. Stu's dad, Steve Kahn, swam in that meet.
Also at that meet were Ray and Zada Taft who, in 1971, founded the San Mateo Master Marlins, the first officially recognized club in the LMSC. In 1972, the Tafts brought the National AAU Short Course Championships to Northern California and 325 swimmers attended in San Mateo. More local teams were formed and in 1974, Dave Scott established the Davis Aquatic Masters, team number seven. Just three years later, at the Community Park Pool in Davis, and under the direction of Dave's father, Verne Scott (Chairman of Pacific Masters Swimming), DAM hosted the first Pacific Masters Championships with over 300 swimmers participating. Verne's tenure also coincided with Pacific Masters inaugural open water competition, when DAM introduced the Lake Berryessa swim on June 6, 1982.
Verne was recognized as Pacific Masters Male Swimmer of the year in 1982, along with fellow DAM swimmers Mike Collins (1990), Andy McPherson (1992) and Brad Winsor (1995). Collins was also Pacific Masters Coach of the year in 1992, as was Stu Kahn in 2012.
Pacific Masters Swimming administers its competitive swimming program through the Pacific Masters Swimming Committee, which consists of representatives from each club registered with Pacific Masters Swimming. Each club will have at least one representative and an additional representative for every 100 members. Stu and Mary Kahn are currently Co-Chairs of the LMSC Coaches Committee, and, as such, are members of the Pacific Masters Executive Committee.