This past weekend the Douglas Dolfins proved that quantity is irrelevant when quality is present. With merely 19 swimmers competing, the Dolfins still managed to get third place overall in the annual Bishop Invitational meet in Bishop, Calif.
Leading the team was 18-year-old Shaelin Morefield with 10 first-place finishes and 11-year-old Connor Taylor with nine first places. Cailey Taylor, 11, was also among the top finishers with seven first-place finishes. All three athletes were also high point winners in their respective age groups.
With 39 first-places and 128 top-eight finishes, the Dolfins considered this meet a success, according to head coach Kat Matheson. At least one-third of the Dolphins’ participants managed to win high-point trophies, she said.
With each swimmer competing in just their own age group, as opposed to the traditional brackets of 11-12 year olds, 13-14 year olds, 15-16 year olds and 17-and-up, this format allows for more wins in the categories. That was evident with the Dolfins since every swimmer was able to place in the top eight and every swimmer who went placed in the top 12.
However, the best part of the trip to Bishop for the Dolfins was the traditions that happen outside of the pool, such as the annual water fight and barbecue at Bishop City Park. Adam Dack, who is coming into his senior year at Douglas High School, said the barbecue is always the best part of Bishop for him.
Assistant coach Sarah Davenport said she believes it is the strong traditions that contributes to the Dolfins’ close family persona, and the Bishop Invitational is one of the oldest traditions the team has, having gone to it for more than four decades.