The trophy presentation wasn’t as dramatic as when Steve Harvey announced the incorrect Miss Universe winner or when Warren Beatty announced “La La Land” the best picture at the Oscars instead of “Moonlight”.
Initially, the Gulf Coast High School boys and girls swimming teams were announced as winning their respective titles, Cape Coral took second, and Barron Collier took third, at the Shark Relays on Saturday.
That was until the teams had cleared, and Gulf Coast coach Rachel Elliott walked over and informed Cape Coral coach Dianne Kimble of the mistake. The Cape Coral boys won.
“You’re kidding me,” Kimble said. Shock washed her face and a reassuring smile from Elliott confirmed it wasn’t a joke. Elliott had already switched the trophies by the time she found Kimble.
Thirteen area schools participate in the Shark Relays at the Noors pool, Naples, Saturday, Sept. 8, 2018. (Chris Tilley/Special to the Naples Daily News) (Photo: Chris Tilley/Special to the Naples Daily News)
The Cape Coral boys finished second seven times throughout the day, and took home four firsts in the 400-yard individual medley, 250 crescendo, 100 butterfly and 100 breast relays.
“It was really nice to come out and win,” Kimble said, “but it’s definitely a surprise. It was truly nice to see fast swimming and the little battle we had with the top schools today.”
More: Top 5 Boys Swimmers to Watch, Collier County
More: Top 5 Girls Swimmers to Watch, Collier County
The Shark Relays were more about team chemistry than team success. It’s one of the bigger events of the year and coaches try to let everyone swim. The top swimmers do not compete in every swim.
“We had a lot of new swimmers compete, and today was about team,” Elliott said. “We may look like individuals in a pool, but we don’t do anything well without the team. I’m proud of how we acted as a team.”
The Gulf Coast girls took first four-place finishes. Rachel Moran, Kristi Broadnax, Olivia Owens and Brooke Boling helped the Sharks win the 200 medley relay (1:55.11). Danielle Boland, Boling, Owens and Moran took the 200 fly relay (1:52.02). Broadnax, Owens, Moran and Alexis Ricard took the 200 breast relay (2:13.85). Ricard, Boling, Maeve Gillen and Grace Muesing won the 250 crescendo relay (2:22.81).
It was a different scene at the YMCA Norris Aquatic Center a year ago when Hurricane Irma canceled the event. The Shark Relays had their 20th anniversary.
“It’s exciting,” Elliott said. “We got through the whole day with no delays. Everyone was fleeing a year ago.”
Saturday at Norris Pool
1. Gulf Coast 482, 2. Cape Coral 460, 3. Barron Collier 436, 4. Naples 400, 5. Riverdale 362, 6. Port Charlotte 358, 7. North Fort Myers 304, 8. Lely 242, 9. Community School of Naples 210, 10. South Fort Myers 180, 11. Seacrest Country Day School 102, 11. Canterbury Fort Myers 102, 13. Oasis 14
1. Cape Coral 460, 2. Gulf Coast 452, 3. Barron Collier 450, 4. Naples 314, 5. Seacrest Country Day School 312, 6. North Fort Myers 304, 6. Community School of Naples 304, 8. Port Charlotte 264, 8. South Fort Myers 264, 10. Riverdale 250, 11. Canterbury Fort Myers 136, 11. Oasis 136, 13. Lely 102
Combined Team Scores
1. Gulf Coast 934, 2. Cape Coral 920, 3. Barron Collier 886, 4. Naples 714, 5. Port Charlotte 622, 6. Riverdale 612, 7. North Fort Myers 608, 8. Community School of Naples 514, 9. South Fort Myers 444, 10. Seacrest Country Day School 414, 11. Lely 344, 12. Canterbury 238