Swim Invitational attracts local high schools

OCCC’s Aquatic Center will play host to Westmoore High School’s “Jaguar Invitational,” a multi-high school swim tournament, on Saturday, Nov. 12.

The Invitational, currently entering its 12th year, is a multi-divisional event that will include 10 teams hailing from both the 6A and 5A sporting divisions respectively.

Westmoore Jaguars Swim Coach Brent Long expects an exciting time for the schools as well as the fans.

“This year, the teams that are participating look to be very evenly matched,” Long said.

Long said that, despite this being a rebuilding year for the Jaguars, his team is more than ready to compete.


“In the past, Westmoore may have dominated the event in a few areas but this year it looks like we’ll have a more wide-open field,” he said.

President of the Westmoore Swim Club Cindy Bothwell said the main objective behind the invitational is to support the Westmoore swim team.

“The goal of hosting the Jaguar Invitational is to raise funds that in turn will enable us to support the swimmers and coaches,” Bothwell said.

When asked what he thought about the OCCC Aquatic Center being made the venue for the event, Long was effusive with praise for the facility.

“It’s a great place to host an event and [The Aquatic Center] is a high quality venue,” he said.

“It’s great for the teams, it’s great for the fans and it’s great for the kids — and that’s what it’s there for.”

With a plethora of events ranging from a medley relay to freestyle and stroke-specific events, Long said fans are in for the biggest treat if they are able to watch the relays.

“The relay has the potential to be the most exciting event because you have so many swimmers competing against each other and the competition can get intense,” he said.

For the novice swim fan, Long said the way in which the event is run as a whole is a good introduction to the sport.

“One of the great things about swim meets in that they are run so well,” he said.

“In track meets, sometimes you have to wait 30 to 45 minutes between events. With tournaments like this you’re liable to go seconds — with almost no down time between events.”

Bothwell said the possibility for record-breaking performances should compel any novice swim fan to attend.

“It is exciting to see these young athletes put themselves to the test; personal records will fall and maybe some state or national records,” Bothwell said. “You might just see a future Olympic athlete.”

While the complete listing of teams has yet to be released at press time, the high schools that are confirmed by Long to be participating in the event include Moore, Southmoore, Mustang, Yukon and Putnam City.The invitational will begin at 11 a.m. with warm-ups beginning at 9 a.m.

General admission to the event is $5 at the door and $3 with a valid student I.D. Children under 10 will be admitted free.

For more information on the invitational visit the Westmoore Swim Team’s official website at www.swimmingjags.com

To contact Sean M. Tolbert, email sportswriter@occc.edu.

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