WILDEY, Barbados – There is no doubt that Marvin Johnson is the best boys 11-12 swimmer in the Caribbean, and he showed why by picking up gold medal number ten last night as he dominated his counterparts at the Barbados Aquatic Center after three days of competition at the 34th CARIFTA Swimming Championships.
Yesterday, The Bahamas pulled in 15 medals – 10 golds, two silvers and three bronze. After three days the Bahamas has a total of 55 medals – 28 golds, 13 silvers and 14 bronze.
Second to them is Jamaica with 46 medals – 15 golds, 20 silvers and 11 bronze. Trinidad and Tobago is third with 31 medals – 12 golds, eight silvers and 11 bronze.
On the points standings, The Bahamas now leads Jamaica by 102.50 points after day three of competition. The Bahamas has 667.50 total points with Jamaica scoring 565 points. Trinidad and Tobago sits in third with 497 points.
Johnson was spectacular in his first race of the night, the boys 11-12 200 meters (m) individual medley (IM). The Grand Bahamian’s time was 2:26.93. Johnson showed his versatility in the pool as he led the entire race doing all four strokes – butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, and freestyle.
Second to him was Bermuda’s Elijah Daley who swam the race in 2:27.64. Touching the wall after him was Aruba’s Jaydon Croes as his time was 2:31.00.
It was another record-breaking performance for Izaak Bastian in the 50m breaststroke, as he swam 28.20 seconds to smash his old record of 28.69 second that he swam last year in Jamaica. Bastian met the FINA World “B” standards in the 50m breaststroke. He got off to a very quick start and never let that lead go as he extended it between 10m to 5m.
Bastian looked ready to swim again after coming out of the water.
Second to him was Jamaica’s Cameron Brown who finished the race in 30.19 seconds. St. Vincent and Grenada’s Shane Cadogan was third in a time of 30.32 seconds.
DaVante Carey, Bastian’s teammate was fifth with a time of 30.87 seconds.
Johnson picked up his second gold medal of the night, jumping out to a fast start in the boys 11-12 100m freestyle to win it in 56.61 seconds. Johnson ensured he had the lead when he perfectly turned off the wall to extend the lead and chased the record of 56.11 seconds.
Tristin Ferguson, his teammate, was the silver medalist after touching the wall in 59.07 seconds. Curacao’s Jayen Viscaino was third with a time of 59.32 seconds.
Luke-Kennedy Thompson picked up his third gold and his fifth overall medal of the meet in the 200m IM, swimming it in 2:10.17. He used the final strokes – breaststroke and freestyle to distant himself from the field. That time qualified him for the Pan Am “B” time.
Behind him was Barbados’ Roan Baker with a time of 2:13.40. In a close third place was Nicholas Vale of Jamaica with a time of 2:13.46.
Also, in that race from The Bahamas was DaVante Carey, he swam 2:16.88 to get sixth place.
Nigel Forbes separated himself from the field in the final 10 meters as he won the gold in the boys 13-14 50m breaststroke in a time of 31.15 seconds. He sprinted to victory over silver medalist Sam Williamson of Bermuda whose time was 31.52 seconds. It was the Bahamas’ Erald Thompson III as he touched the wall in 31.64 seconds.
The Bahamas was not finished yet as they ensured they dominated the breaststroke aspect of the games to win the girls 15-17 50m breaststroke. Jamilah Hepburn sprinted away from the field to secure the gold with a time of 34.20 seconds. Curacao’s Chade Nersicio touched the wall in 34.82 seconds to secure the silver medal. It was Haiti’s Emilie Grand’Pierre who swam away with the bronze medal with a time of 35.81 seconds.
The Bahamas’ Katherine Slatter was fifth with a time of 36.56 seconds.
Nigel Forbes swam away with his second gold of the night when he won the boys 13-14 200m butterfly sporting a time of 2:14.49. Forbes made the push in the final 50 meters to secure his gold medal swim.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Zarek Wilson’s time of 2:16.31 was enough to get him the silver medal. Barbados’ Jake Chee-A-Tow won the bronze with a time of 2:16.31.
Ian Pinder won gold for Team Bahamas in the boys 15-17 200m butterfly race. Pinder recorded a time of 2:11.02 to finish ahead of the quick Cayman Islands duo of Jake Bailey and Jordan Crooks.
Bailey won silver in a time of 2:13.23 and bronze was won by Crooks with a time of 2:14.40.
In the relays, the boys 11-12 mixed team of Ferguson, Giann Sands and Mia Patton, helped Johnson complete his tenth gold medal haul as they clocked 4:09.38 in the 4x100m freestyle relay.
The team held off Bermuda who finished with the silver medal in a time of 4:14.27. The bronze was won by Jamaica. They swam 4:15.41.
The boys 15-17 team of Luke-Kennedy Thompson, Kevon Lockhart, Lamar Taylor and Gibson, won gold in the 4×200 freestyle relay race. They recorded 8:04.15 to pull away from Cayman Islands who finished second place.
It was a close race as the Cayman Islands team finished the race in 8:06.78. Jamaica won the bronze medal in a time of 8:17.33.
That was the final race of the night that capped off a very good night for Team Bahamas.
Today is the final day of pool action. The Bahamas will be looking to hold off Jamaica to complete their third straight CARIFTA Swimming Championships victory.
Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism
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