Jillian Crooks Lowers Cayman Islands Record in 100 Fly (1:00.22) at 37th Annual CARIFTA Champs

XXVII CARIFTA Swimming Championships

  • March 30-April 3, 2024
  • Betty Kelly-Kenning Aquatic Centre
    • Nassau, Bahamas
  • LCM (50 meters)
  • Results

Jillian Crooks lowered her own Cayman Islands record in the 100-meter butterfly to highlight the 37th annual CARIFTA Swimming Championships last week in the Bahamas.

The 17-year-old Tennessee commit (’24) first broke the CARIFTA 15-17 meet record in the 100 fly prelims with a time of 1:01.76, lowering Sabrina Lyn’s standard of 1:02.14 from 2022. Crooks then blasted a personal-best 1:00.22 in the final, knocking more than a second off her own national record of 1:01.44 from January’s Pro Swim Series stop in Knoxville.

Crooks also won the 50 freestyle (26.20) and 100 free (56.71) while earning a runner-up finish in the 100 back (1:06.04) across the four days of pool competition at the recently refurbished Betty Kelly-Kenning Aquatic Centre. Her best times in the 50 free (25.66) and 100 free (55.18) are both from last summer.

One of the top rising talents in Massachusetts, 16-year-old Florida commit (‘25) Zuri Ferguson, swept the girls’ backstroke events. In the 100 back, her winning time of 1:02.82 crushed the CARFITA 15-17 meet record (1:04.60 by Houston senior Danielle Titus in 2019) by almost two seconds. Ferguson’s personal-best 1:02.00 from last summer stands as the Trinidad and Tobago record.

Ferguson triumphed in the 50 back (30.08), about half a second short of her national record (29.40) from last May. She also won the 200 back in a new meet record of 2:16.04, within a few seconds of her Trinidad and Tobago standard (2:13.28) from 2022. The previous CARIFTA 15-17 record stood at 2:21.38 by Bermuda’s Rebecca Sharpe from back in 2009.

Ferguson broke another CARIFTA meet record as a member of Trinidad and Tobago’s 400 medley relay, which reached the wall first in 4:27.26 and toppled a 16-year-old standard set by the Bahamas (4:27.37) back in 2008. She led off with a 1:03.70 back leg before Tyla Ho-A-Shu (1:16.26 breast), Lyla Browne (1:06.32 fly), and Amari Ash (1:00.98 free) brought home the victory.

Heidi Stoute turned out to be the most prolific CARIFTA record breaker at the meet. The 14-year-old from Barbados pulled off a complete freestyle sweep, taking down three 13-14 records in the 100 free (57.52), 800 free (9:11.81), and 1500 free (18:08.07) while also adding wins in the 50 free (26.91), 200 free (2:07.26), and 400 free (4:28.83).

Stoute crushed her lifetime best in the 800 free by almost 10 seconds, sneaking under the old CARIFTA record of 9:11.82 set by Joanna Evans back in 2012. She’s now just about 11 seconds shy of Lani Cabrera’s Barbadian national record (9:00.09) from 2012.

Stoute only shaved about a second off her best time in the 1500 free, but she still demolished Lola Haworth’s CARIFTA standard of 19:37.74 from 2022. She dropped almost a second in the 100 free off her previous-best 58.43 from December, taking a few tenths off Lyn’s CARIFTA record from 2019. Her 50 free victory also marked a personal-best time by a few tenths of a second, and she was a couple seconds off her best times in the 200 free (2:05.47 from May) and 400 free (4:25.61 from August).

Cayman Islands 17-year-old Harper Barrowman obliterated the CARIFTA 15-17 meet record in the 1500 free (17:35.29), dropping more than 23 seconds off Britta Schwengle’s previous mark (17:58.67) from 2022. Her best time before the meet was just 17:50.69 from last April’s CARIFTAs, meaning she lowered her lifetime best by 15 seconds over the course of a year to get within 10 seconds of Kyra Rabess’ national record from last year (17:25.66).

Barrowman narrowly missed the Cayman Islands record in the 800 free (9:01.41 by Heather Roffey in 2004) with her victory in 9:02.90, taking almost nine seconds off her previous-best (9:11.72) from last August. The Drexel commit also won the 200 free (2:05.99) and 400 free (4:27.69), dropping a few tenths off her previous-best 200 free time (2:06.36) from February’s World Championships.

TCU freshman Rhanishka Gibbs scared the Bahamian national record in the 50 breast (32.06 by Lilly Higgs in 2021) with her 1st-place showing in 32.18, but she did take down Higgs’ CARIFTA 15-17 record (32.70) along the way. The 17-year-old shaved about a tenth off her previous-best 32.29 from last April. Gibbs also won 50 fly (28.01) and earned runner-up finishes in the 100 breast (1:13.30), 200 breast (2:49.16), and 50 free (26.22). She dropped almost half a second off her best 50 fly time from last year’s World Championships (28.43) and less than a tenth off her previous-best 50 free time from last July (26.29).

The other meet record that fell came courtesy of Trinidad and Tobago in the 400 free relay (3:32.24). Anpherne Bernard (53.05), Zachary Anthony (52.91), Darren Belfon (54.28), and Liam Carrington (52.00) combined to erase the Bahamas’ standard of 3:33.68 from 2019.

Trinidad and Tobago features some star power on the men’s side as 28-year-old Olympian Dylan Carter took home victories in the 50 free (21.98) and 50 fly (23.42). He has been as fast as 21.69 in the 50 free from December 22.85 in the 50 fly from the 2022 World Championships, where he barely missed the podium with a 4th-place finish.

Representing his native Bahamas, Henderson State senior Lamar Taylor broke the 50-second barrier in the 100 free for the first time with his winning mark of 49.33. He dropped almost a second off his previous-best 50.10 from Worlds last year. Taylor is fresh off back-to-back Division II national titles in the 100-yard free last month. He added runner-up finishes at CARIFTAs in the 50 free (22.32) and 50 fly (24.47) behind Carter.

After the four days of pool competition, 5k open water races also took place for the 14-15 and 16-18 age groups. On the boys’ side, Cayman Islands 18-year-old Connor Macdonald won the 16-18 age group in 1:02:29.62 and Saint Martin 15-year-old Joey Schvartz won the 14-15 age group in 1:06:49.92. On the girls’ side, Martinique 15-year-old Sayane Guivissa won the 14-15 age group in 1:09:07.17 and Bahamas 17-year-old Giada Bertoldo won the 16-18 age group in 1:10:13.35.

The Bahamas topped the medal table with 34 gold medals ahead of Trinidad and Tobago (24 golds), Cayman Islands (18 golds), Jamaica (18 golds), and Barbados (15 golds). They also led the combined team scores with 1,096.5 points ahead of Cayman Islands (660), Trinidad and Tobago (639), Jamaica (559), and Barbados (486.5).

Combined Team Scores

  1. Bahamas – 1,096.5
  2. Cayman Islands – 660
  3. Trinidad and Tobago – 639
  4. Jamaica – 559
  5. Barbados – 486.5
  6. Martinique – 405.5
  7. Aruba – 294
  8. Bermuda – 248
  9. Antigua Barbuda – 213
  10. St. Lucia – 112
  11. US Virgin Islands – 103
  12. Grenada National – 66
  13. Curacao – 49
  14. Saint Martin – 45
  15. St Vincent – 41
  16. Haiti – 23.5
  17. Turks and Caicos – 17
  18. Guadeloupe – 9
  19. Suriname – 8
  20. Tie: Guyana – 3 / Sint Maarten – 3

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of

1 Comment
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 month ago

I had the great privilege to be on deck for this meet and what an incredible experience! There is no better atmosphere for a meet – live music, raucous crowds, and FIREWORKS?! USA, we have something to learn about how to make meets fun. Credit to The Bahamas for hosting an unforgettable competition.

Shoutout to Bolles products, Liam Carrington (Trinidad & Tobago) boys’ 15-17 high point winner and 5x gold medalist (50m back, 100m back, 200m IM, 200m back, 400m free relay), and Antoine Destang (St. Lucia) 2x gold medalist (50m fly, 100m fly).

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

Read More »