Lacombe’s Dolphins have made a strong finish to their season.
Over the last two weekends, the Dolphins competed in the regional and provincial swim meets, gaining 45 medals at regionals and sending 18 swimmers to provincials where they returned with one medal in each colour.
Dolphins Coach Erica Bolze said it is not unusual for the Dolphins to do so well at the regional meet. Sending 18 swimmers to provincials and returning with three medals is impressive though, especially considering how many swimmers some of the larger clubs in the province manage to send to the provincial competitions.
“We did pretty well this year, I am pretty impressed.”
Bolze added that, because of numbers, it is difficult to compete with some of the larger clubs, some who send over 100 swimmers, on a points basis. With that in mind, Lacombe’s results considering how many swimmers they sent are outstanding.
More impressive still is that this year’s team were mostly in the younger half of their age groups, said Bolze. Prior to the regional and provincial meets, Bolze said the swimmers would face stiff competition but she was confident they had worked hard enough to be competitive. “They worked their butts off all year,” said Bolze. “You can really tell when they are competing against older kids – they really do have the technique and the skill. I think their hard work really paid off and I think all of the swimmers achieved what they wanted.”
Bolze has said previously the Dolphins try to judge swimmers not by how they stack up against competition, but by how much they improve and progress. As such, swimmers often set their own goals for the season and Bolze said this season, few swimmers if any were disappointed by what the accomplished.
“They were a lot of personal goals met,” said Bolze.
She added as the Dolphins’ coach, she was very happy and even surprised with how the swimmers had progressed over the season.
“I’m very impressed with how far they have come,” said Bolze. “A lot of the swimmers who have struggled in previous years really came out. It’s really awesome to see how they actually do when it comes down to it. A lot of the swimmers absolutely shocked me this year.”
This is Bolze’s last year coaching the Lacombe Dolphins, leaving the club to commit more time to her job. She said she is somewhat sad to leave but couldn’t have left on a higher note.
“I couldn’t have asked for anything better for the end of the year,” said Bolze. “They all did super well and they all had a lot of fun and I think that’s the most important thing – that they are having fun and loving what they are doing.”