Penticton’s Ashley McMillan made her time at the 2016 Abbotsford B.C. Summer Games count.
McMillan, a member of the KISU swim club, captured three gold and three silver medals.
Her gold came in the 200- and 400-metre individual medley as well as the 1,500-m freestyle, while she earned silver in the 200- and 400-m freestyle and 4×50 m girls medley, with Penticton’s Marlee Caruso and Summerland’s Brooklyn Parliament.
“I was just really happy that all my strokes were feeling good and my 200 IM, I had the best backstroke I’ve probably ever swam in my entire life,” she said. “I think I just performed at my maximum when it really counted.”
McMillan said the other athletes were quick, but many swam at her speed making for good races.
When asked about the three gold medals she won, McMillan said she was really excited as she never expected to do that well while in Abbotsford July 21 to 24.
While swimming the 200 IM, which she completed in two minutes, 29 seconds and 61 tenths of a second, McMillan, a former Penticton Pikes athlete, was motivated by the cameras.
“I thought that was really cool. I just wanted to swim really fast because there were so many cameras. I love the cameras,” she said.
McMillans first gold medal was in the 400 IM. She was so pumped about the win, but was also “dying,” because it was a tiring swim. She completed that distance in 5:20.90.
In earning seven medals, McMillan said her performances gave her confidence. She loved competing at the Games and taking in the whole experience.
“I think it was really good. I met so many new people. I think I made some memories that I don’t think I will ever forget,” said McMillan.
Among the things she enjoyed in Abbotsford were the opening ceremonies.
“They had music, and the torch and it felt like I was at the Olympics,” she said.
Also winning medals were Evan Peters with gold in the 200-m freestyle, silver in the 400-m freestyle, and bronze in the 200-IM and 200-m backstroke.
Elijah Kliever picked up silver in the 100- and 200-m backstroke and bronze in the 50-m freestyle. With Travis Kascak, Kliever helped the 4×50-m medley relay team win gold in 1:59.55. He also picked up silver in the 4×50-m free relay in 1:49.33.
Caruso earned bronze in the 200-m backstroke finishing in 2:30.19.