Tsunami Saipan coach hails swimmers’ effort


Swimming Center Tsunami Saipan members celebrate after another fruitful training session at the Pacific Islands Club pool. (Contributed Photo)

Swimming Center Tsunami Saipan coach Hiro Kimura lauded their swimmers efforts, as they tried and successfully earned qualifying slots to the 2019 Guam Swimming Championships.

Twenty-two Tsunami Saipan members made the grade after months of training sessions, but unfortunately the Guam meet was canceled due to the pool’s poor conditions. Still, Kimura said the time, hard work, and dedication that Tsunami Saipan swimmers showed to qualify in the competition should be rewarded thus the 22 will no longer have to do trials next year when the Guam meet pushes through.

“Our swimmers worked hard and improved a lot this season, so we will give them opportunity to compete in Guam next year. We will set another high goal in Guam,” Kimura said.

Kevin Guerrero, Nelson Batallones, Joseph Zhang, Juhn Tenorio, Isaiah Aleksenko, Alex Kim, Kean Pajarillaga, Hans Xu, Shuman Barman, Kouki Watanabe, Aasish Dangol, and Justin Ma earned qualifying times in the boys division, while the girls side had Aika Watanabe, Asaka, Shoko, and Nagisa Litulumar, Ayumi Obligacion, Ashley Dangol, Julia Jinang, Aoi Braxton, Maria Batallones, and Sari Barman. Guerrero, Ma, Jinang, Braxton, Nagisa, and Barman would have been first-time qualifiers in the Guam meet.

“Sari came to the pool four times a week throughout the whole season. It was a lot of hard work for an 8-year-old, however she made it. I’m so proud of Sari and I am looking forward to seeing her in future competitions,” Kimura said.

The Tsunami Saipan coach also thanked the parents of the swimmers for keeping their children in the program despite the many challenges they are facing in the aftermath of Super Typhoon Yutu.

“I thank all the parents and guardians for supporting the swimmers. I know it’s not easy to drop off/pickup your children during practice sessions. We will continue to train this summer,” Kimura said.

He added that Tsunami Saipan is working on sending its swimmers to an off-island tournament after the Guam meet was canceled.

“We will try to find a way for our swimmers to go to off-island. I have already negotiated with a Korean coach and hoping we could join one of their meets,” Kimura said.

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.

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