Magnificent seven bring back the golds

Swim Team Borders: Seven members of Swim Team Borders took on the best school-aged swimmers in Scotland. From left: Kirsty Armstrong (Kelso High), Lucy Hope (Jedburgh Grammar), Matthew Berlansky (Earlston High), Jessica Wilcox (Hawick High) , Morgan Anderson (Kelso High), Ryan Brown (Kelso High)  and Amy Fraser (Earlston High).
Swim Team Borders: Seven members of Swim Team Borders took on the best school-aged swimmers in Scotland. From left: Kirsty Armstrong (Kelso High), Lucy Hope (Jedburgh Grammar), Matthew Berlansky (Earlston High), Jessica Wilcox (Hawick High) , Morgan Anderson (Kelso High), Ryan Brown (Kelso High) and Amy Fraser (Earlston High).
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BORDERS swimmers disproved the theory surrounding strength in numbers when making a big impact at the Scottish Schools Swimming Championships.

Seven members of Swim Team Borders’ performance squad took on the best school-aged swimmers in Scotland at the Dollan Aqua Centre in East Kilbride, winning six gold medals and one silver medal in impressive style.

And Borders performance coach Alex Jordan was mightily happy with his charges.

He said: “Our small team of Borders swimmers made a massive impact at this competition due to some very impressive performances.

“Each swimmer is permitted to compete in only two events at this meet and there are no finals. The challenge, therefore, is for each swimmer to perform at their very best with the one opportunity they are given in each event, which is exactly what they did.”

Lucy Hope claimed gold medals in the 100m and 200m backstroke, both in Scottish Schools record time. At just 15 years of age, her efforts secured her the 15/16 years girls best performance trophy.

Ryan Brown also bagged two gold medals and deservedly received the best performance trophy for the boys 13/14 years age group.

Brown smashed the previous Scottish Schools record in the 13/14 years 200m butterfly and left his opponents in his wake in the 200m individual medley.

Kirsty Armstrong continued the trend, winning gold in a dominant, flawless display in the 13/14 years 200m individual medley, despite being at the younger end of this age spectrum.

Armstrong claimed the East District Age Group record in this event and also took silver in the 100m butterfly behind an opponent one year her senior.

Amy Fraser contributed further to the team’s medal tally in the best fashion possible, claiming gold in the 17-19 years 200m butterfly.

Fraser and Brown are members of the Borders Athlete Support Programme (ASP), while Hope receives support from both the Scottish Institute of Sport and the ASP.

Swim Team Borders is an initiative of the Borders Performance Development Programme. The programme runs in partnership with Scottish Swimming, Borders Sport & Leisure Trust and five local swimming clubs, including Teviotdale, Peebles, Kelso, Gala and Duns.

Members from these clubs have the opportunity to join Swim Team Borders, which involves attending morning training sessions with Jordan.

Thus far, the programme has been a catalyst for impressive results from Borders swimmers at local to international levels.

For more information see the swimming page of the Sport Borders website www.sportborders.org.uk