The Gators have won their home meet from 2007 to 2011 and they truly believe they’ll win a sixth straight Gator Invitational crown this weekend, July 20-21, at City Park Pool. Friday’s events begin at 2 p.m. with the 50 and 100 freestyle, the 100 IM and the 25 and 50 butterfly while Saturday’s events start at 10 a.m. The popular inner-tube race will be featured on Saturday.
“I have no doubt we’ll win our home meet again. Like all Griffin sports, we’re about winning here,” said Gators assistant coach Justin Salazer. “We’re trying to be like Michael Jordan around here. We want a sixth title.”
Seven out-of-town teams will try to stop the Gators’ win streak: The Summit YMCA Titans, Carrollton Bluefins, Swim Macon, Macon Waves, Rountree Recreation Torpedoes, Douglas County Stingrays and new team Kingfish.
The Gators will counter these teams with 98 total swimmers — 79 which are 18 and under along with 19 adults. There will be 200 swimmers total competing in the Gator Invitational this weekend.
“We should have a good showing this weekend. Many of our swimmers have dropped their times and our new swimmers have done well,” said Salazer.
Salazer said he’s been impressed with Gators LeeAnn Frank, 15, and Connor Ellerbee, 8, this season and he expects them to really perform well this weekend.
“LeeAnn is very competitive and comes ready to swim every day so it’s no surprise she’s dropped her times,” he said. “And Connor has really done well for a first-year Gator — he made state in the 100 IM and in the 9-10 boys freestyle relay.”
Salazer also noted that Ellerbee swam the 100 IM for the first time at the District IV Meet last weekend and was able to qualify for state in that event.
“I’m looking forward to our meet and I believe we’ll win it again. I really want to win a few of my events, especially the backstroke which is my favorite,” said Gators swimmer Raven Couch, 13. “The bottom line is the Gators will rule — again.”