The University of British Columbia Thunderbirds, led by Canadian Olympian Savannah King took home the Felstad Memorial Trophy as the top women’s team at the Canada West University Championships, while the University of Calgary men, led by senior Jason Block walked away with the E.W. Griffiths Trophy for the men’s team title.
The final team scores:
UBC – 878
U of C – 742.5
U of A (University of Alberta) – 473.5
U of C – 826
UBC – 770.5
U of A – 461.5
On the women’s side Savannah King came away as the Canada West University Championships Swimmer of the Year for the second year in a row. King won 200 freestyle, 400 freestyle, 800 freestyle, 200 backstroke and was part of the UBC relay team which won the 800 freestyle relay. In addition to those wins King also broke meet records in the 200 freestyle (1:57.60), 800 freestyle (8:26.98) and 800 freestyle relay (7:57.60).
Fellow Olympian Tera Van Beilen also did her part to help the UBC women collect their 24th Canada West Championship winning both the 100 (1:07.60) and 200 breaststroke (2:24.00).
Rookie of the Meet Tianna Rissling of the University of Calgary was impressive winning both the 50 breaststroke (31.11) and 400 IM (4:39.22) in meet record time.
Women’s Coach of the Year UBC and Thunderbirds Head Coach Steve Price was satisfied with his team’s performance but knows they will need to be better at the Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS) Championships, which will be held in Calgary from February 21-23rd.
“I am pleased with how our teams battled, both the women and the men,” said Price. “We have a young men’s team and was really impressed with Coleman Allen stepping up and Savannah King’s performance but still a lot of work before CIS nationals.”
On the men’s side UBC’s Coleman Allen took home the Swimmer of the Year honours by winning the 200 freestyle, 50, 100 and 200 butterfly and was part of the UBC 400 freestyle relay that took gold in a meet record time of 3:19.84. Allen also broke meet records in the 100 (52.39) and 200 butterfly (1:58.11).
Although Allen’s performances were impressive they were not enough to stop the University of Calgary Dinos from taking the team title. The Dinos were led by Jason Block who swept the breaststroke events and was part of the meet record setting 400 medley (3:37.06) relay team. Block also set a meet record in the 50 breaststroke in a time of 27.92.
The University of Calgary also got considerable contributions from another one of their all star rookies Russell Wood. Wood who won male Rookie of the Meet, swept the backstroke events setting meet records in the 100 (53.07) and 200 backstroke (1:56.40).
The female Coach of the Year, University of Calgary Head Coach Mike Blondal was impressed by his team’s work ethic, “It’s always a battle with UBC and it came down to the last two events. We worked hard and are still at work but really excited about the win.”