SMAC in Charlotte Taking on charlotte by storm

With two of the nation's fastest three swim clubs present, and with teams traveling from as far as Boston, MA, members of Smoky Mountain Aquatic Club traveled to Charlotte this past weekend to see exactly how they stack up. The Novant Health Invitational was a FAST meet, an exciting meet, and an incredible weekend. What makes a meet fast? The competition. The field was thick. A finals swim a this meet is a great representation of the work put in throughout the season. With any luck, it's an indication of where we'll be at the end of the season.

Saturday morning, the team showed up ready to rock. Marna Dodson kicked it off with an :11 second drop in her 200 FR and Johnny Darguzas capped the morning the 3rd fastest ever 400 IM in SMAC history, a mark set with an awesome 10 second drop. All but 3 swims Saturday morning were best times. Talk about a great start.

Trinity Wenzel and Tucker Valliere

Coach Charlie hard at work

The afternoon session was highlighted by a few big drops and a few first Evers. Regan Wilkinson's 200 FR was his first and fastest ever. 8 year old Jaden Gibson's 2:52 200 FR was perhaps the fastest 8 year old 200 FR in SMAC history, and more than likely one of the fastest 8 year old 200 FR's in the state this season. Not long after, Zack Lyle took center stage with a dominating 3rd place performance in the 200 FR, earning top 15 honors out of 3,865 10&Under Male swimmers in the state. Brooks Barbee's spirit and effort in our boys 10 and Under relay contributed to 3rd fastest 10 and Under 200 FR relay in SMAC history.

SMAC Attack!

Saturday was a special day, capped by a swim off in the 50 BK featuring SMAC lifer Trinity Wenzel. What's a Swim-off?? When races come down to .01 of a second, if there's a tie to get into finals, the two swimmers race each other in an all out, Mano y Mano, duel in the pool, guts and glory race for a chance to swim in finals. After tying at 31.21 for 10th place with a swimmer from Raleigh, the race was on. It could have been called a race I guess, but it was over before it started. Trinity "when I say 'win' you say 'zel' " Wenzel finished the swim-off with a SMAC All Time Team Record in the 50 BK. 29.99. SMAC's second top 15 swim in the STATE so far this season. IN THE SAME DAY. Below is Tinity's second place finish in the 50 BK finals session - from LANE 10!

Sunday morning, the team followed suit. Gavin Bishop's huge drop in his 500 FR was spectacular, topping a group of guys that were under 6:00 for their first time. Riley Laursen's 2:34.99 200 BR earned him an 8th place spot in SMAC's All Time Records. Stephen Wenzel's 50 FR was wonderful, hitting an 8th place finish in SMAC's records. Congrats to Tessa Davis for a fantastic first 200 Fly.

Team Meeting at dinner!

Glenna and proud Dad!

Sunday afternoon, the hits kept coming, Teagan Laursen's big 3.4 second drop in the 100 Fly was a lot of fun. Zack Lyle's 50 FR is wothy of mention - only 3 other 10 and under SMAC swimmers have ever broken :30 in the 50 FR. What about Lily Myers' :11 second drop in her 100 BR?! Or Brian Youker's :13 second drop in his 50 BK!? The afternoon was great for our team.

Sunday's final's session was ELECTRIC. Johnny Darguzas' 200 Fly was the 5th fastest time at the meet and third fastest in team history. Glenna Whaley had a huge drop in the 200 BR. Mason MacDonald came in 5th in his 50 FR. The Men finished with an All Time, first place in the record books 400 Medly Relay.

Sunday wasn't any different. The team kept pace Tucker Valliere's 8 second drop in the 50 BR and Porter Richardson's 5.77 second drop in his 100 FR were no exception. Eric "I put the 'Go' in" Gomez cut over a second in his 100 FR. All in all, it was a great weekend.

Athletes with 100% Best Times

  • Jaden Gibson
  • Riley Laursen
  • Ella Laursen
  • Zack Lyle
  • Porter Richardson
  • Stephen Wenzel
  • Trinity Wenzel
  • Brian Youker
  • SMAC Team Record 12 and Under Girls 50 BK 1st place All Time - Trinity Wenzel - 29.99
  • SMAC Team Record Men 400 Medley Relay - 1st place All Time - Stephen Wenzel, Riley Laursen, Johnny Darguzas, Mason MacDonald.

Mason and Eric!

Biggest Drops and Breakout Swims

  • Gavin Bishop 100 BR -11.75 (-11.40%)
  • Johnny Darguzas 400 IM -10.83 (-4.07%)
  • Tessa Davis 200 IM -6.00 (-3.71%)
  • Marna Dodson 200 FR -11.07 (-6.74%)
  • Riley Laursen - 100 BR Relay Split - 1:08.95
  • Teagan Laursen 200 FR -13.02 (-7.12%)
  • Zack Lyle 100 BR -5.67 (-5.33%)
  • Mason MacDonald 500 FR -9.22 (-2.92%)
  • Lily Myers 100 BR -11.41 (-9.41%)
  • Porter Richardson -10.19 (-10.80%)
  • Tucker Valliere 50 BR -8.43 (-16.62%)
  • Stephen Wenzel 100 FR -2.82 (-5.16%)
  • Trinity Wenzel 500 FR -15.46 (-4.11%)
  • Regan Wilkinson 50 BK -4.97 (-9.23%)
  • Brian Youker 50 BK -13.87 (-14.11%)


  • Total Time Dropped: 334.24 Seconds
  • Total Number of Best Times: 85
  • Total Time Dropped this Season: 3,412.93 - NEW TEAM RECORD
  • Total Number of Best Times this Season: 935 - NEW TEAM RECORD.

SMAC was on fire and will continue to be no matter how deep the water is.

NEXT MEET: Feb 4/5 at the Waynesville Rec Center.

Created By
Charlie McCanless


Coach Charlie Georgianna Wenzel

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