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A younger Neptune team dives back into water

The Nelson Daily Sports
By The Nelson Daily Sports
June 3rd, 2011

By Bruce Fuhr
The Nelson Daily Sports

It was bound to happen.

After years of dominating the Kootenay Summer Swim Association, the Nelson Neptunes are finally enter a rebuilding phase — which the rest of the region is probably thankful that it’s happening.

“I expect we will have a good season but we may not win as many meets,” admitted Neptune skipper Michelle Lorusso on the eve of the start of the 2011 season Saturday at the NDCC Pool.

“(That’s due to) a low enrollment this year with only 45 kids and most of them younger swimmers.”

Gone is the likes of Rebecca and Melissa Afford.

However, the dynamic duo has not left the scene. The pair, along with another Neptune stalwart, Kiandra McLaren, has simply moved up to the coaching ranks to join Lorusso on the pool deck.

The coaching quartet, which can still swim in the senior divisions, will be put to the test right away as the Neptunes play host to the season opener this weekend.

“It is a great advantage (for us) to start at home,” explained Lorusso, who has been coaching for the past eight seasons.

“The swimmers can get back into the competitive swim meet season in there own home pool and that takes some stress off since they swim in (NDCC Pool) almost every day.”

Still Lorusso & Company needs the support of the few senior swimmers the club has.

Which is why it’s so important for provincial medalist Sam Matthew to step up once again.

“Sam (Matthew) was the only Nelson Neptunes swimmer to get a medal at provincials last year in Kamloops in the 50 breaststroke when he placed second,” said Lorusso.

“I expect a great season from all of our senior swimmers as they are all dedicated and hard-working.”

The Neptunes are part of the Kootenay Association that includes Grand Forks, Trail, Creston, Colville, Wash., Castlegar and Kimberley.

The season shifts to Grand Forks for a B-meet next week before teams travel to Trail June 18-19.

Of course all the teams are pushing for the Kootenay Regional Finals August 6-7 in Castlegar.

The top swimmers at Regionals advance to the B.C. Summer Speed Swim Association Championships August 15-21 in Richmond.

“The goals this season are to have fun and win a few meets,” said Lorusso. “For the swimmers many of their goals are to get best times and make it to the provincials.”

For more information on the Nelson Neptunes visit

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