Community Sports

Local swimmers post strong times at event

Seventy-Four swimmers from Bellingham Bay Swim Team swam to 245 lifetime best times in the Pacific Northwest Swimming January Challenge” on Jan. 12-13 at the Arne Hanna Aquatic Center.

The Girls 200 medley relay team of Michelle Lam, Camorah King, Jessica Vlasic and Ali Fisher bested the team record by 1.5 seconds with a time of 1:58.07.

Bliss Cui, 8, set team records in the 25, 50 and 100 breaststroke; Cole Avery, 10, set a team record in the 50 Breaststroke and Andy Small, 12, set a team record in the 400 individual medley.

BBST had especially strong showings in the 200 butterfly, 400 individual medley, 50 freestyle and the 500 freestyle.

At the competition, BBST added several qualifiers to its squad for the 2008 Western States Age Group Sectionals in March and now has approximately 25 percent of the team qualified for Pacific Northwest Swimming Championships in July.

The Whatcom County YMCA Dolphins also participated in the event.

Olivia Nielsen, 10, led the team in points after two days of racing, earning first place three times in two divisions.Joining Nielsen was team newcomer Madison Dohm, 11, also with division firsts in the 50 backstroke, freestyle and butterfly sprints.

Calvin Richan, 10, stretched out in the 200 IM and 50 back to win in his divisions, and his sister Kailee Richan, 11, won her division in the 100 Free.

Sam Hunter, 7, won the 100 IM in his division, and his brother Louie, 11, improved his 100 backstroke enough to win in his division.

Jonathan Hegeberg's 50 breastroke division win solidified the Dolphin showing.


The Bellingham Northern Lights synchronized ice skating team, known as Panda Bears, took third place in the Juvenile category at the BC/YT Open Synchronized Skating Championships in Langley, B.C.

Twenty-six teams from throughout British Columbia and Washington competed in various divisions. This season's Bellingham Northern Lights are Hazel Cashman, Claire Jackson, Samantha Jackson, Emily Kolar, Kat McCarroll, Jasmine Midgley, Victoria Omstead, Jessica Pauls, Diana Sanchez, Alyssa Solari, Rachel Stonedahl and Carly Williams. The coaches are assistant Kayla Solari and head coach Tina Mauler.

The team trains at the Bellingham Sportsplex and off-ice at the Whatcom Family YMCA.