Fatima, SJC POS retain TSTT Swim Titles. Green Machine new co-ed champs

Trinidad - Over 530 swimmers from thirty nine schools converged on the Dr. Joao Havelange Centre of Excellence Swimming Pool Complex Macoya to participate in the TSTT Foundation Annual National Secondary Schools’ Meet on Sunday.

When the water ripples had settled, Fatima College, St. Joseph’s Convent Port of Spain, and St. Augustine Senior Secondary were crowned the boys, girls and coeducational champions respectively. This event was hosted by Tidal Wave Aquatics on behalf of the Amateur Swimming Association of Trinidad and Tobago (ASATT), and continues to be the biggest swim meet on the aquatic calendar.

Fatima College continued its dominance in the male category, again having the better of their arch rivals CIC. The fight to the top was not as intense as last year where it came down to the last relay events to determine the boys’ victor. Thirty-three points separated the top two schools this year compared to 4.5 points last year.

Presentation College San Fernando and Trinity College East exchanged positions this year placing third and fourth respectively. Adding more valuables to their trophy chest, Fatima also won the Best North School title.

There was no change in the top three ranking in the Girls Category as St. Joseph’s Convent Port of Spain was the runaway winners. Their Southern sisters, St. Joseph’s Convent San Fernando continued their quest to be champs in the girls category as the margin of victory of the Port of Spain Convent was somewhat narrowed. They won the best South School title. Holy Name Convent again had to settle for third place.

St. Augustine Senior Secondary regrouped after its fourth place finish last year in the coeducational category to emerge convincingly as winners of the category this year. They beat last year’s winners International School of Port of Spain into second place, with San Fernando Central Secondary inching up two notches to place third.

The best swim of the day came via ASATT Sportswoman of the Year 2009, Kimberlee John Williams. Representing S.J.C. San Fernando, John Williams again lowered the open and 15-17 50 metre backstroke she set last week at the Sea Hawks S.C. 1st Annual New Year Splash. The time established last week was 29.99. Having the honour of being the only swimmer breaking a record at the meet, the new time established was a blistering 29.78.

Adrian Hinds of St. Mary’s and Anya Welch of SJCPOS were adjudged the most outstanding male and female non-competitive swimmers respectively. Hinds won three gold in the back, breaststroke and free events with his silver in the butterfly event. Welch similarly won three gold in the butterfly, with silver in the backstroke. On the competitive side, 12 & unders Jabari Baptiste of Fatima, and Syriah David of St. Augustine Girls won the most outstanding male and female competitive swimmers respectively. Baptiste won all events in his age group, while David won three golds and a silver in the backstroke.

Schools and swimmers competed for trophies, medals and $30,000 of grants courtesy the TSTT Foundation. Continuing on its mission to assist schools with the development of the sport, the TSTT Foundation has rewarded winners with these grants for the second consecutive year, and has celebrated its fifth anniversary as title sponsors of this Annual event.

In order to help alleviate the unfortunate circumstance befalling the people of Haiti, a collection was picked up on the day of the meet to send to the earthquake ravaged nation. Approximately 150 cans and $2,100.00 was collected from the swimmers and schools present to assist in the Haiti relief effort.

Present at the meet were Veronica Samuel of the Ministry of Education, Camille Salandy Head of Public Relations and External Affairs TSTT, Mr. Gregory Collymore President of ASATT and Mrs. Hazel Haynes Manageress of Tidal Wave Aquatics. Ms. Camille Salandy pledged TSTT’s commitment to the development of youth especially through sport. She also gave the assurance TSTT’s continued support in the promotion and advancement secondary school swimming.

The next event on the swimming calendar is scheduled for February 21st as the 3rd Annual Long Course Pentathlon is hosted at the Marlins Swim Pool, Westmoorings.

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