Swimmers make waves at state title meet

WODONGA has scooped the pool at the Victorian titles in Melbourne this week.

The medal haul catapulted the WAVES-based club to the second best in country Victoria and 10th over all.

Gold medallists included Zoe Deacon, 13, in the 100-metre and 200-metre breaststroke along with Heath MacLeod, 14, in the under 14 and 15 100-metre freestyle.

But coach Mike Ursu also listed Olivia Plunkett as one of the stars of the meeting.

The Holbrook 16-year-old, who travels to train in Wodonga 10 times a week, made seven finals and qualified for six events at the nationals.

“There were just so many amazing performances, swimmers who came from no where to be in finals and swim personal bests,” he said.

“Ben Bayes-Smith slashed 11 seconds off his best in the 200 metre backstroke — that’s unheard of.

“The under-16 relay team qualified for the nationals by four seconds — one of the swimmers, Harrison Lowe making both the 100 metre and 200 metre freestyle final.

“Will Matheson qualified for the nationals in the 200 metre backstroke and Georgia Polkinghorne who is just 12 made seven finals.”

Ursu said there were no miracles just hard work and dedication from the swimmers and their parents.

“They have worked so hard to get to this point,” he said.

“You could see it in the pool, in the way they train — there are no sporting miracles.

“These kids are here 99 per cent of the time, rarely miss a session.”

Ursu said the next target was the Victorian Country Championships that will be held in Wodonga in late January.

“We want to keep that second best in country Victoria at the meeting and put on a show like nothing before,” he said.

“There will be something like 900 swimmers, let alone family and friends, on the Border over the three-day carnival.

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