Making Waves & Turning Heads

CGC Swim Academy Season Highlights (Fall 2023 to Spring 2024)

March 28, 2024

The Canada Games Centre Swim Academy’s annual programming season started in the fall, welcoming more than 100 participants across the Summer Swim Team Off-Season Training, Masters Swim Team, and Lifesaving Sport Team. These swimmers have been hard at work in the pool and at bi-weekly dryland sessions. They had the opportunity to join multisport practices including lifesaving skills, water polo and aerobics. Next term, they will also learn underwater hockey and artistic swimming.

Summer Swim Team Off-Season Training

The Summer Swim Team Off-Season Training has been practicing their technique and building their racing skills with 3 unofficial time trials in the books. Each year, summer swimmers participating in off-season training are eligible to compete as exhibition swimmers in one year-round swim meet. Our CGCSA participants had the opportunity to compete at both the Nova Tech Aqua Kids #1 Central Meet and the Dalhousie Tigers Sprint Meet.

Dalhousie Tigers Sprint Meet | October 15th, 2023

19 swimmers attended the Dal Sprint Meet, setting 28 personal bests:

  • Alfred Lai swam 50m Freestyle in 26.95, breaking the 27 second threshold and placing him 10th among the year-round swimmers
  • Neil Wang swam the 100m Freestyle in 1:01.28, (comparable to an 8th place position)
  • Jack Quinton swam 100m Backstroke in 1:13.39, (comparable to a 9th place swim)
  • Emily Levy swam the 200IM, finishing in 2:49.71, (comparable to a 5th place position, and the 100m Freestyle in 1:06.94, placing in 9th)

Nova Tech Aqua Kids #1 Central Meet | October 28, 2023

11 swimmers attended the Nova Tech Meet and a total of 6 personal best times were set:

  • Elias Hughes, who was attending his very first meet, swam times that will place him in age group this summer!
  • Edan Lau swam personal bests in all his events
  • Mary Wang swam the 50m Breaststroke in 1:00.38, comparable to a 8th place finish

    Masters Swim Team

    Masters Invitational Swim Meet | November 26, 2023

    The CGC Swim Academy hosted 61 athletes at the Masters Invitational Swim Meet in late fall. The 6 CGCSA Masters swimmers placed in the top 3 in at least one of their events and the Masters Team accumulated 16 top 3 placements. The relay team, which included Marylou Donnelly, Shelley Hindle, Cora Johnson and Colleen Purcell, placed 5th overall.

    (L-R): Coach Kylie, Cindy, Colleen, Shelley, MaryLou, Cora & Coach Victoria

    • Cora Johnson (18-24 age group) | Gold in 1500m Freestyle; silver in 200m Freestyle and 50m Backstroke; bronze in 400m Freestyle
    • MaryLou Donnelly (60-64 age group) | Gold in 50m and 100m Freestyle, and 50m Breaststroke
    • Cindy Dyer (60-64 age group) | Gold in 50m Backstroke and 100m Medley; silver in 50m Freestyle and 50m Breaststroke
    • Helena Piccinini-Vallis (60-64 age group) | Gold in 50m Backstroke and 100m Backstroke
    • Colleen Purcell (54-60 age group) | Gold in 50m Freestyle and 400m Freestyle
    • Shelley Hindle (48-53 age group) | Gold in 50m Freestyle and 100m Freestyle

    We would also like to congratulate the Masters swimmers in the following competitions:

    • Dylan Balmaceda, CGCSA Masters athlete participated in the Special Olympics Swim Meet on November 26, 2023, placing first in 5 of his six events, including leading the 4x50m Freestyle relay to victory.
    • Two Masters athletes attended the Swim Nova Scotia Masters Invitational in February, challenging their personal bests. Dylan Balmaceda swam best times in all of his events, dropping more than 20 seconds in an exciting 400m Freestyle race! Teammate MaryLou Donnelly set a personal best in the 100m Freestyle.
    • CGCSA took home 5 provincial records at the Halifax Chronos Masters Invitational Long Course Meet on March 9, 2024.
    • MaryLou Donnelly set provincial long course records in both the 100m Freestyle and 100m Breaststroke events in the 65-69 Women’s age category, with leading times of 1:26.08 and 1:52.27, respectively. She also broke existing records in the 50m Freestyle and 50m Breaststroke, smashing them by several seconds with times of 38.33 and 50.90 in the respective events. Colleen Purcell broke the 400m Freestyle long course record in the 55-59 women’s age category, dropping more than 6 seconds from the previous time set in 2011.

    Lifesaving Sport Team

    CGC hosted a Lifesaving Sport Pool Series Competition on February 17, 2024. 18 CGCSA athletes attended, with 51 top 3 finishes including 4 relay teams.


    We would like to send out a big congratulations to Ewa Gawlik, CGC member and past CGCSA Masters swimmer following her medals wins at the 2024 World Aquatics Masters Championships in Doha, Qatar! Ewa won gold medals in the 200m Butterfly and 200m Freestyle, in addition to third place finishes in the 50m and 100m Butterfly, and fourth in the 400m Freestyle.

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