For the third year in a row Harlequins Aquatics were the toast of the Buffalo City Aquatics (BCA) as they sealed the 2017 BCA Championship title earlier this month.
In a repeat of last year’s champs Harlequins took a comfortable win overall ahead of Ultimate Swim Club and Aquanova, who were extremely close together in second and third respectively.
“I was thrilled with the team camaraderie. It is just a wonderful team feeling and all the swimmers know that in every swim they do they can make points for the team, and it is just a lovely way to end the year,” said Harlequins coach Vionne Skinner.
In all Harlequins had 53 competitors, of which 28 were girls and 25 were boys, with each one of them contributing in some way or another to the team’s overall success in the gala.
“All of them were banded together, with every swimmer contributing to build our points tally, making it a wonderful team experience,” said Skinner.
The top point-scorers for Harlequins on the boys’ side were Jordan Vogel, who took top spot, followed by Liam Hansen, Brad Blom, Estiaan Terblanche, Bryce Buret, Jestin Bow, Nicholas Flanagan, Christian Muller, Rossouw Nel and Dylan Pieters.
On the girls’ front the ever impressing Catherine Eland was once again the star of the show, topping the points standings for Harlequins and claiming a perfect score, while she was followed on the list by Amy Swart, Tumaini Macdonald, Jorja Lindstrom, Meralda Terblanche, Samantha Mouton, Layla Vahed, Georgia Cruickshank, Elsje Jacobs and Chloe Bow.
In all 296 medals were won by the swimmers, with 90 of them bronze, 93 silver and 113 gold.
“We had four swimmers qualify for SA junior nationals, namely Catherine Eland for the 100m free, back and fly, Meralda Terblanche for the 100m and 200m free, Christian Muller for 100m free and Tumaini Macdonald for the 100m free,” said Skinner.
“We also had two swimmers qualify for the SA youth nationals, with Meralda Terblanche for the 100m and 200m free and Christian Muller for the 100m free.
“Then to top it off, Catherine Eland managed to break the provincial 100m fly record for 12- year-olds.
“All this was achieved in pursuit of that ever-moving personal best time.”
Harlequins will now be looking forward to next year’s events, with the first coming up in around two weeks’ time when the swimmers will compete in the inter-provincials.
They will be aiming for some top performances to start building up some positive momentum towards the main events, which will be the nationals taking place in March and April next year.
“I think all the swimmers will be able to take the momentum from their good performances into next year, and it will stand them in good stead,” said Skinner.
“I am really looking forward to seeing their progress over the coming months.”