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UV-PCS at the BC Winter Games

David Bakken - Field Reporter

From February 26 to the 29th, Port Alberni played host to the B.C. Winter games. Zone 6, the Vancouver Island and Sunshine Coast zone, had 5 UV-PCS Swimmers attend the games as zone 6 swimmer representatives. Along with other Vancouver Island swimmers, Jovanna Ruffolo, Ashkaughn Forghani, David Vizsolyi, Craig Dagnall and Brian Macarthur made the trip to the Alberni Valley to compete in the games.

The competition was at a high level with many of the Provinces top 14 and under swimmers attending the meet at the Echo Center pool.

David Vizsolyi earned silver medals in the 200 fly and 400 free, and a bronze in the 200 free. Ashkaughn Forghani captured bronze medals in the 50 and 100 freestyle races.

Jovanna Ruffolo, Craig Dagnall and Brian Macarthur swam with zone 6 relay teams and posted several best times on individual swims. The PCS gang had a chance to experience an athlete village atmosphere which helped prepare them for future meets. The relay action was exciting with zone 6 winning the swimming event on overall points.

Congratulations to Jovanna, David, Brian, Craig and Ashkaughn for their showings at the Winter Games.

In her first year swimming with the Vikes, she was an unbelievable performer and leader. Holder of 13 World Records, 5 World Championship Gold Medals, and 5 Paralympic Gold Medals, she has been an inspiration to the whole team.

She chose UVic while attending the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester and began her varsity swimming career here this fall. Born with only one leg, she has not only competed and won the most prestigious International levels, she has challenged herself with goals that many able-bodied athletes are unable to achieve.

In January at the Canada West Championships here in Victoria, Stephanie achieved her dream goal of attaining the CIS qualifying standard in the 200m backstroke. At the CIS Championship, she was awarded an honorary All-Canadian for her performances over the course of the weekend, breaking two world records and narrowly missing a third in the 400m freestyle.

Not only is Stephanie a great competitor, she is a great leader and an example of what you can accomplish based in desire, determination and the willingness to defy traditional logic.