SWIMMING: Nattrass wins title at Far Western Championships; team tallies 12 top-10 finishes | TheUnion.com

SWIMMING: Nattrass wins title at Far Western Championships; team tallies 12 top-10 finishes

Submitted to The Union

Northern Sierra Swimming sent seven top competitors to the Far Western Championships at the iconic Santa Clara International Swim Center over the weekend, and left with 12 medals signifying top-10 finishes in the West.

The meet boasts more than 1,700 of the most qualified age-group swimmers in the western United States. Those who make the top 10 in an event swim it again in the evening in an exciting final showdown heat, complete with music, lively announcing and a stadium seated crowd of hundreds of fans.

Tyler Nattrass, 12, continued to assert dominance in his age group, finishing in the top 10 in every event he entered, and winning the 100 freestyle with a time of 50.30 seconds. Nattrass is Northern Sierra's first Far Western Champion, and his time is currently ranked fifth in the United States for 12 year old boys.

His 200 freestyle was another showdown, with Nattrass touching second in a time of 1:48.78. The time is currently ranked third in the United States. Nattrass also finished second in the 200 backstroke (2:04.83), third in the 500 freestyle (4:59.89), fourth in the 400IM (4:32.02), sixth in the 100 backstroke (58.61), and ninth in the 50 free (24.24).

"I had great competition that pushed me to swim faster than I have ever raced" said Nattrass, who also thanked his coaches for helping him through his races.

Emma Lawless, 17, competed in one day of the meet, swimming two events. She finished top 10 in both the 17-18 girls 200 butterfly (2:03.02) and 100 backstroke (57.16).

Recommended Stories For You

Elizabeth Brouwer, 16, swam four events at the meet, and finished top 10 in two events, earning third in the 15-16 girls 500 freestyle (5:02.24), and seventh in the 200 butterfly (2:07.88).

Mia Axelman, 12, made the top 10 final in the 100 freestyle, finishing fourth overall with a time of 54.30.

Other Northern Sierra qualifiers who raced at this top level event included: Hannah Molitor, 12, participating in five events (50 fly, 100 fly, 50 back, 100 back, 200 back)

Elle Larsen, 12, racing all three breaststroke events (50 breast, 100 breast, 200 breast) and Jaden Sharp, 10, making significant drops in two freestyle events (50 free, 500 free).

"It's difficult to put the high level of competition at this meet into perspective," Northern Sierra Swimming coach Allie Anderson said. "You have the best age group swimmers from all over the western US travel to compete against each other, and the times are some of the fastest in the country. It is such a fantastic experience for our swimmers to qualify and compete at this level, working to make finals and race with the very best. We couldn't be happier with their hard work, attention to detail and overall performance. It was an excellent way to end the short course season."

To learn more about the local Northern Sierra Swimming club team visit http://www.northernsierraaquatics.org.

Coaches may submit game reports by email at sports@theunion.com or by phone at 530-477-4232.