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Neptunes Rushton, Matthew and Cowan golden in Castlegar

The Nelson Daily Sports
By The Nelson Daily Sports
July 20th, 2012

The a handful of Nelson Neptunes continue to shine in the pool as the Kootenay Summer Swim Association season grinds to a halt.

The Neptunes finished fifth overall at the recent Castlegar Aquanauts meet Sunday in the Sunflower City.

“I was amazed with the results of this meet,” said Neptune skipper Rebecca Afford.

“The swimmers just endured the hardest week of training of the season, but most were still able to get best times.”

Headlining the small Neptune pod is the gold medal trio of Jaylen Rushton, Samuel Matthew and Sage Cowan.

Rushton edged out teammate Madeline Holitzki for the gold medal in the division one girls while Matthew and Cowan earned top spots in division four boys and division four girls, respectively.

Afford rounded out the medals winning silver in division seven girls.

“The senior swimmers (Division 3 and up) have had the most intense practices, but performed well despite that,” Afford explained.

“Samuel Matthew had some great races; he took off five seconds in his 200m I.M. going from a 2:51.02 to a 2:46.63 and took off three seconds in his 100m breaststroke to place first with a time of 1:22.15.”

Host Castlegar won the team title ahead of rival Trail Stingrays. Grand Forks was third followed by Colville and the Neptunes.

Creston, Kimberley and Cranbrook rounded out the eight-team field.

The previous week in Colville, Holitzki and Rushton exchanged places while Cowan and Matthew finished at the top of the podium.

Afford once again won silver.

Nelson finished sixth behind Kimberley with Trail claiming the team title ahead of Castlegar.

“We are pleased with the results from the Colville meet which is infamous as being the “fun” meet  — and this year was no exception,” said Afford.

“The swimmer’s were able to tough out the 35-plus degree weather and still do best times.”

“I am so happy with how the younger swimmers are progressing and really hope they realize the talent that they have,” Afford added.

The Neptunes have a weekend off before traveling to Kimberley July 28-29.

The Kootenay Regionals are August 4-5 in Colville.

The top swimmers qualify for the B.C. Championships August 13-19 in Nanaimo.

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