The Belen Hurricanes almost always find themselves at a disadvantage, with the lack of a high school swim team in Belen. But the Hurricanes don’t take that to heart.
“Our kids do very well, considering how much time they have to train,” head coach Sandra Wright said. “Most of these other teams start in May, but we have to wait until June, when the pool opens here.”
Even with as little practice as they had, the Hurricanes blew by Tanoan last Saturday in a dual meet at the Belen High School pool. Future BHS freshman Keitta Torres, who swims in the 13-14 year-old division, made a big splash. She finished first in the individual medley (IM), the butterfly, the backstroke and the relay, along with Candice D’Arcangeli, Davrie Sandon and Frances Sisneros. Torres also placed third in the breast stroke.
Sisneros also did well individually, with fourth-place finishes in the short and long freestyles and the butterfly and a third-place finish in the backstroke. D’Arcangeli picked up three third-place finishes — in the short freestyle, the IM and the breaststroke.
Sandon took second in the breaststroke and IM and was third in the short freestyle and butterfly.
Shaunna Lovato finished second in the freestyle, breaststroke and IM and third in the butterfly in the 11-12 year-old division. She also won two relays, the medley and freestyle, with the help of Alysha Carrasco, Michele Costilla and Monique Peralta. Individually, Peralta got a first, a second and a third in the breaststroke, 100 freestyle and butterfly, respectively.
Kayla D’Arcangeli took second in four events on Saturday: the short freestyle, backstroke, IM, and breaststroke.
Rebekah Rivera got two seconds and a third at the meet — her seconds coming in the butterfly and the medley relay and her third in the IM. Rivera competed in the relay with Samantha Gonzales, Kayla D’Arcangeli and Kelly Lundmark.
For the boys, Colton Nix was on two winning relay teams — the medley and freestyle — and took third individually in the backstroke. Nix was joined in the relays by Clovis Rivera, Tomas Rodriguez and Adam Carrillo in the medley and Rodriguez, Rivera and Will Hendley in the freestyle.
In addition to two wins in the relays, Rodriguez swept through five individual events, winning the backstroke, the short and long freestyles, IM and the butterfly in the 9-10 year-old division.
“I think they did very well,” Wright said of her team. “They all improved on their times, and they had a good time and they pushed themselves.”
The Hurricanes take on YMCA, the four-time defending Sundance Aquatic Association champions, in Belen at 3:30 on Wednesday. The Hurricanes host Rio Rancho at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday.
Though the Hurricanes may be at a disadvantage again, they don’t take it to heart. “Really, all the teams in this league are very tough,” Wright said. “It’s going to be a challenge for us to swim against all of them.”