By Hanna Dean
The Gulf Shores Swim Team hosted the end of the season Gulf Coast Area Aquatic League (GCAAL) Championship Swim Meet at the Bodenhamer Center on July 27-28. The 307 swimmers represented eight area teams and competed in 136 events over the two-day meet.
The Gulf Shores Dolphins placed second in the First Division of the league. The final scores in the First Division were 4,098.5 for the Fairhope Area Swim Team, 2,979.5 for the Gulf Shores Dolphins and 2,057 for the Eastern Shores Piranhas. The Foley Sea Lions won the Second Division and Brewton Local Area Swim Team won the Third Division.
Gulf Shores had 67 swimmers compete in the meet with 20 swimmers winning recognition for high point achievements in their age group. High point winners for the Dolphins were: Murray Reed, Nolan Matthews, Ryland Elam, Jack Biggs, Ruby Rosnagle, Joseph Zaurzar and Macy Manni. Gulf Shores had five high point first runner ups. These were: Serah Smith, Liam Silva, Cooper Hopkins, Liam Bickham, and Kimberly Lee. Dolphins winning the second runner-up award include: Bradley Bledsoe, Layne Reid, Emma Lloyd, Nora Malone, Mae Margaret Reed, Gabe Schroeder, Callie Hopkins and Beck Fitzgibbons.
Ten-year-old Murray Reed was named Male Swimmer of the Year at the conclusion of the swim meet. He won all five of his individual events and set new league meet records in four of his races. One record broken of special note was the 100-yard Individual Medley record that had stood since 1980. Murray received plaques for each of his record-setting swims, and his name will be listed as the record holder of the event in the meet programs going forward.
Nine-year-old Jack Biggs set new league records in the 25-yard Breaststroke and the 25 Butterfly. He also won all five of his races. During the meet, Biggs and Reed teamed up with Cooper Hopkins and Henry Brereton to win the 200-yard Freestyle relay and finish second in the 100 Medley relay for the 9-10 boys age group.
The relay events were a great source of points for Gulf Shores at the meet. Of the 22 relay events that were contested, the Dolphins had entries in 21 of the races. Gulf Shores won six relay events and finished in second place in another nine relay events. For the entire meet, Gulf Shores won 44 of the 136 events.
The swim team is taking their end-of-summer break at this time and will resume practice on Sept. 4. That date will begin the fall “swimester” for the team and run through the Christmas break.
For more information about the Gulf Shores Swim Team, contact the Aquatics Director for the City of Gulf Shores Brook Hopkins at 251-968-1427. The Swim Team practices in the afternoons at the Bodenhamer Center in Gulf Shores five days per week.