Tyler Wall and Acacia Benn are going to the Canada Summer Games.
Qualifying to represent B.C. in Winnipeg July 28 to Aug. 13 wasn’t easy. Wall missed time while recovering from mononucleosis, while Benn was hit with the flu bug three times. Both will now represent B.C. for the first time.
“I’m excited. I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it coming into 2017, said Wall, who had to skip out on a few events while recovering from his illness. “It got easier going into Westerns (Speedo Western Championships in Calgary last month).”
Now that he has qualified, Wall’s goal is to medal.
Qualifying showed Benn that she can succeed if she works hard.
“This year has been extremely tough. Finally some hard work has paid off,” said Benn, who was kept out of the pool for about a month.
Benn looks forward to meeting new people, creating relationships, and if all goes well, getting onto the podium.
KISU coach Tina Hoeben will join them as one of the coaches.
“I’m super excited about it. For me to go as the coach, I went for coach for Western Canada Summer Games two years ago, that was just a build up to this,” she said. “I really feel like I can play a much better role leadership wise. It’s always super fun to go to a multi-sport games.
“It’s really good. I feel like we’ve accomplished a lot to get two swimmers on that B.C. team,” continued Hoeben.
KISU’s coach said Benn fought hard to get into the top-12, and Wall got in by being in the top-three provincially, despite his setback with mononucleosis.
“It took him back from that and do as well as he did was a huge accomplishment,” she said.
Hoeben said Wall’s role will be to collect as many points possible, while Benn will do the same, but provide the team with depth and help on the relay team.
Speedo Western Championships
In Calgary, April 20 to 23, Wall and Jaren LeFranc brought back seven goal medals, four by Wall. KISU’s medley relay team also won gold and beat out a few fast clubs in the process. The mixed relay with Anna Spence (backstroke), LeFranc (breast stroke), Sam Lasinski, (butterfly) and Benn (freestyle) had strong performances to win gold. Overall, KISU finished fourth, which Hoeben said is a “big deal.”
“It’s not an easy meet. The facility has a reputation to not be very fast,” said Hoeben. It’s hard to go there and not swim your best times. We didn’t have a single best time on the first day. We were not alone.”