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Lahaina Swim Club competitors excel at short course meet

By BY WALTER CHIHARA - | Aug 6, 2021

From left, Emily Gorokhovsky, Sacha Salem and Kirsten Byers celebrate at the Maui Age Group Swimming Association short course meet held recently at Lahaina Aquatic Center.

LAHAINA — There is always something special about competing on your home course or field. Just ask Sacha Salem, 12, who led her Lahaina Swim Club teammates in an outstanding effort at the Maui Age Group Swimming Association short course meet two weeks ago at Lahaina Aquatic Center.

Salem, a rising eighth-grader at Hawaii Technology Academy with a 4.0 grade point average, blazed to a MAGSA county record time of 5:18.6 in the 11-12 age group 500-meter freestyle event.

Her effort erased the mark held by Kysha Altura set 11 years ago.

Salem also won gold medals in the 100 backstroke and the 50 butterfly events.

Teammate Emily Gorokhovsky was second to her in both of those races and placed first in the 200 fly and second in the 100 freestyle, and Miranda Somers came in fifth in the 50 fly.

In the 15 and over division, LSC’s Emily Hegrenes finished fourth in the 100 back event.

On the boys’ side of the pool, Kona Yamada, Tristan Richard and Gabe Fischer led the LSC charge in the 9-10 category with first place finishes in the 25 breaststroke, 25 backstroke and 25 butterfly, respectively. Yamada was second in the 25 back and the 25 fly races. Richard also aged up to the 10 and under division to cap his day with a triple crown effort with gold medal performances in the 100 free, 50 breast and 50 fly events.

In the 11-12 category, Eli Hazlet was third in the 100 free and 100 back, and fourth in the 50 breast, and Kaina Yamada was fourth in the 100 free, second in the 100 back and fourth in the 50 fly. Eli Hazlet was third in the 100 free, fourth in the 50 breast, third in the 100 breast and third in the 50 fly.

Levi Stoddard finished fifth in the 50 breast and 50 back events.

For the 13-14 division, Jacob Gorokhovsky and Noah Richard led the charge. Gorokhovsky won a gold medal for the 200 backstroke race and took third in the 50 fly and fifth in the 100 breast. Richard was fourth in the 50 fly and 100 breast, and second in the 100 back.

Lahaina Swim Club product Mathew Iverson, now competing for Sak-AZ, was a triple crown gold medal winner in the 200 individual medley, 100 back and 100 breast events, and he also won a silver medal in the 50 fly.

Sacha’s dad, Chris Salem, had high praise for the LSC coaching staff of Tom Popdan, Jen Wiseman, Kirsten Byers and Gabby Lindblad, and organization Administrator Gina Iverson.

“They are all so amazing in what they do for the kids. We are all so grateful for what they do for them,” he said.