MINDEN -- The Carson Tigersharks are right where their coach expected them to be after the second day of the Pacific Swimming Zone 4 Championships at the Carson Valley Swim Center.
Carson swimmers posted the fastest timess in 14 of the 68 events held on Saturday, good enough to put them in second place heading into the final day of competition today.
"It was another really good day," Tigersharks coach Jackie Boudreau said. "It'd be interesting to look at the team scores. There is a big team focus on this event. Individual accomplisments are great, but it's nice to see your whole team do well. Hopefully we can place second or better."
The Tigersharks finished second in the event last year and appear likely to repeat that result. Going into today the team has a 764 combined score, 420 behind the Reno Aquatic Club and only seven points ahead of third-place Lakeridge Swim Team. However, Boudreau doesn't expect the team to lose any ground because many of the distance events, one of the Tigersharks' strong points, are held today.
Abby Niehoff and Kiel Costella both won three events for the team. Niehoff, who won the 11-12 girls 200 freestyle on Friday, took top honors in the 50-yard freestyle (27.13), the 500 freestyle (5:30.94) and the 200 individual medley (2:26.42) for her age group. She also added a second place finish in the 100 backstroke. Costella, 17, was equally as dominant, posting the top time in the 200 butterfly (2:14.25), the 400 I.M. (4:37.29) and the 500 freestyle (5:13.75). Like Niehoff, Costella also won an event on Friday, placing first in the 1,650 freestyle.
Other winners for the Tigersharks were Lisa Yamamoto, who followed her first place swim in the 9-10 girls 100 freestyle on Friday with golds in the 50 freestyle (35.43) and the 50 backstroke (45.29). Rebekah Niehoff won the 13-14 girls 500 freestyle (5:23.69) and was the only other girl besides her younger sister and Yamamoto to win an event.
On the boys' side, 10-year-old Ashton McIntosh won both the 50 freestyle (33.98) and the 25 butterfly (18.05) for his age group. Boudreau said McIntosh's performance was one of the highlights of the day. Jake Priest, 12, also won two events. Priest, who won the 11-12 boys butterfly on Friday, took the 50 freestyle (27.31) and 50 butterfly (29.98) events. Nine-year-old Timothy Grunert, who won the 50 backstroke (48.59), was the other winner for the Tigersharks.
Boudreau said that many other swimmers helped out the team and improved their personal best times. She said that Sean McKenna, 14, was one of the best examples. McKenna placed in the top four in four different events, including the 500 freestyle, where he finished third and had the best score of six Tigersharks swimming in the event. McKenna's time of 5:25.73 was a 10 second drop off his best time, Boudreau said.
With so many on her team swimming well, Boudreau said she is feeling confident going into today and that the team should have no problem finishing second.
"We want to finish summer on a good note, she said. "I think with the way we've been swimming, we're in pretty good shape. We have 6-17 year-olds, and they have been swimming well across the board."
The Douglas Dolfins, the event host, are in seventh place with 413.50 points. Wilson Hayes, 16, was the Dolfins top performer on Saturday, winning the 50 freestyle (26.53) and 50 butterfly (29.96) for boys 15-18. In the same age group, Trevor Schaff finished first in the 100 backstroke (1:00.23). Hayes and Schaff were the only two boys for the Dolfins to win an event.
Two Dolfin girls also won events. Rebecca Chappell won the 100 backstroke (1:18.93) for 13-14 girls, and Racheal Tappen, 16, placed the top time in the girls 15-18 200 IM (2:56.41).