Friday, May 23, 2008

Masters Swimmers, Relays Achieve National Rankings

By Chris Price
Copyright 2008 TexSport Publications

PASADENA-DEER PARK, TEXAS (May 23, 2008) United States Masters Swimming (USMS) recently announced the National Top Ten List for long course meters 2007-2008. The list contains the top ten times in United States swam in a 50-meter pool over the year.

The South Belt Area “All Stars” Swimming Team (SBAS) had three individuals and six relays named to the elite list. SBAS had the second most selections of all Gulf LSC (local swim committee) area teams. The Gulf LSC consists of masters swimming teams from the southeast and Gulf area of Texas.

Former Pasadena High School All-American swimmer Kristine Kelly of Deer Park, who recently completed her second season of competing for the University of Houston, was honored for five of her times. She achieved national rankings in the 100-meter backstroke (9th), 50-meter backstroke (5th), 200-meter backstroke (5th), 200-meter backstroke (4th), 400-meter individual medley (6th). Her times were achieved in the womens 18-24-year-old age group.

Derrick Mauk, who competes in the mens 30-34-year-old age group achieved four top ten national rankings. The former national ranked diver for Sam Rayburn High School achieved his national rankings in the 400-meter freestyle (10th), 50-meter backstroke (7th), 100-meter backstroke (5th), and 200-meter backstroke (8th)

In addition, former J. Frank Dobie head swimming coach and Pasadena ISD aquatic director Dennis Shippey, also achieved four national rankings in the mens 60-64 year-old age group. Shippey trains the SBAS but competes for the Woodlands Aquatics Masters Team. He was selected to the elite list in the 50-meter breaststroke (3rd), 100-meter breaststroke (5th), 200-meter breaststroke (5th), and 50-meter butterfly (8th).

SBAS also had three of their single gender relays selected for the national top ten list. Long course (50-meter) relays are determined by the sum of the ages of all four swimmers on the relay.

The mens 200-meter freestyle relay consisting of Mauk, Rick Price, Landon Howard, and Chuck Medema were ranked fifth in the national in the 100-119 age group. Price was an All State Swimmer for Rayburn in 1995.

The womens 72-99 age group 200-meter medley relay consisting of Kelly, Skylar Walker, Stacey Golden, and Lisa Hernandez were the fifth ranked relay in the 18-and over age group. They also were ranked eighth nationally in the 200-meter medley relay. Walker and Golden were former All American swimmers for Rayburn in 2005 and 1998 respectively

In addition, SBAS had three relays ranked in mixed relay division. The mixed relays consist of two men and two women competing together.

The mixed 72-99 age group 200-meter medley relay consisting of Howard, Walker, Medema, and Golden were ranked eighth, while Price, Walker, Kelly, and Medema were raked sixth in the 100-119 age group 200-meter freestyle relay. Kelly, Price, Mauk, and Hernandez were ranked ninth in the 100-199 age group 200-meter medley relay. Howard, Walker Medema, and Golden combined to obtain the number eight ranking in the mixed 72-99 age group.

The South Belt Area “All Stars” Swimming Team is a select competitive team and is made up made up of national and elite swimmers from the Deer Park, Pasadena, Friendswood, Pearland, Clear Lake and South Belt areas. Their swimmers compete in competitions stationed by various state and national associations including United States Masters Swimming, Amateur Athletic Union, Texas Amateur Athletic Federation and American Swimming Association.

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