OKEECHOBEE — The Okeechobee High School Braham girls and boys swim teams competed in the Class 3A District 10 Championship Swim Meet on Oct. 22.
Needless to say, this has been a very unusual season with the canceling of the summer travel team that is used for conditioning, a three-week delay in requiring practice, limited facilities hosting meets, a complete shake-up to assigned districts causing them to have to swim against larger teams that train year-round with proper facilities. But nonetheless, these athletes that get up and practice at 4:30 a.m. for two hours before school starts would not let this hamper their perseverance.
Girls Captain Gracie Gamiotea leads the 16-member girls team and Boys Captain Kase Myers leads the eight-member boys team, of whom there are nine seniors, two juniors, four sophomores and nine freshman. In a historic turn of events, it was announced Saturday afternoon that they had 17 swimmers qualify from the district meet to go on to complete at regionals, which are being held Oct. 28 in Miami.
This is the largest group of swimmers to ever move on to regionals.
These are the events they will be competing in:
• Girls, the 200-yard Medley Relay Team is Yamila Lopez (SR) swimming backstroke, Gracie Gamiotea (SR) swimming breaststroke, Vanessa Johnson (JR) swimming butterfly, and Jolene Sutton (SR) swimming freestyle.
• The 200-Yard Freestyle Relay Team is Gracie Gamiotea, Vanessa Johnson, Emily Hilderbrand (SO), and Jolene Sutton. The 400-yard Freestyle Relay Team is Zoe Walther (SR), Kimee Marquis (SR), Lilly Maxwell (FR), and Cherylynn Bohannon (FR).
• Boys-the 200-yard Medley Relay Team Kase Myers (SR) swimming backstroke, Gabe Bowen (SR) swimming breaststroke, Dylan DiSilva (SR) swimming butterfly, and Brecken Hoover (SR) swimming freestyle.
• The 200-Yard Freestyle Relay Team is Gabe Bowen, Dylan DiSilva, Brecken Hoover, and Tucker Myers (FR).
• The 400-Yard Freestyle Relay Team features brothers Kase and Tucker Myers, Joshua Boon (SO), and Ryan Conrad (SO).
In individual races, the 200-yard Freestyle will be OHS’s only first year senior, Zoe Walther and second year swimmer Ryan Conrad. The 50-Yard Freestyle will be the teams fastest sprinters who all are four-year swimmers, Gracie Gamiotea, Jolene Sutton, Dylan DiSilva, and Kase Myers (this is his second year qualifying to swim in this event at regionals). The 100-Yard Butterfly will be third year swimmer Vanessa Johnson (this is also her second year qualifying to swim this event at regionals), and four-year swimmers Gabe Bowen and Dylan DiSalva. The 100-yard Freestyle contestants will be Jolene Sutton and Tucker Myers. The longest race, the 500-yard Freestyle (that’s 20-laps!) will be swum by four-year swimmer Kimee Marquis, new comer Marlene Huerta (FR), and second year swimmer Joshua Boon. The 100-yard Backstroke will be Kase Myers. The 100-yard Breaststroke will be Gracie Gamiotea, second year swimmer Emily Hilderbrand, and Gabe Bowen.