As draftingthecaribbean looks back at the some of the performances from the 2016-2017 school season we look at the growing legacy of Jamaican sprinter Sion Brinn now coach at the Indian River State College.
Sion who was Jamaica’s top sprinter in the 90’s and inspired a generation of swimmers after him to aspire to qualify for the Olympic Games after seeing him place 4th in the B Final of the 100 metre freestyles at the 1996 Atlanta Games. In that race he swam 50.09 to be the Fastest English speaking Caribbean Swimmer at the Games .His record still stands to this day.
On March 4 of this year Brinn’s men and women’s team won the NJCAA (National Junior Collegiate Athletic Association) titles. In the women’s competition the Fort Pierce Florida based institution complied 1,293 points. South Georgia State placed second with 563 points and Iowa Central was third tallying 498.5 points. The men topped the field with 1,210 points. Southwestern Oregon was the runner up team with 557 points and Iowa Central third with 486 points.
The women won all the 23 races on offer from the 50 yard freestyle to the 1650 yard freestyle, 50-100-200 butterfly, 50-100-200 backstroke,50-100-200 butterfly,100-200-400 yard individual medley,200-400-800 yard freestyle relays and the 200 and 400 medley relays.Osianna McReed set a Championship record in the 50 yard butterfly on her way to the Gold medal in a time of 24.62.
The men would win 21 Gold medals. The non-Indian River victories were in the 200 yard breaststroke and 200 yard individual medley. Nicholas Loomis would set new Championship records in the 50 and 200 yard butterfly with times of 21.27 and 1:46.10 respectively. Both McReed and Loomis were named respective Women and Men’s Swimmer of the Year.
For his tremendous efforts Sion was named the NJCAA Coach of the Year for both men and women. It was his first win for women’s swim team but his fourth consecutive triumph for the men. Brinn has not lost a Championship since taking over the reins of his alma mater in 2014.