NAPILI - Maui Preparatory Academy swimmers Sky Hirsch and Danielle Jefferies paced their school to historic top finishes at the Maui Interscholastic League Championships here on the Valley Isle on Feb. 15, then at the OC16 Swimming and Diving State Championships at the Kamehameha Schools Hawaii pool on the Big Island.
Hirsch paced the Pueo boys team to a seventh place finish in the overall standings and second in the MIL with a gold medal in the 50 freestyle event with a time of 50.65 - a new school record - and a third place in the 100 butterfly race.
He also joined Coleman Lehman, Santana Huck and Sebastian Buenestro-Gilmore on the Maui Prep 200 relay team that finished in fifth place.
The 2013-14 swimmers include, from left: top row — Makena Berry, Corey McMurray, Sky Hirsch, Jacqueline Blumer, Santana Huck, Sebastian Buenestro-Gallimore, Ali Torres, Coach Colleen Jefferies and Coach Mike “Tex” Ritter; middle row — Allie Mosley, Danielle Jefferies, Ember Hirsch, Jaime Advincula, Sammi Shoemaker, Elizabeth James, Emma Scott and Coach Rebecca Hirsch; front row — Jonah Bluh, Zach Giles, Nolan Lehman, Coleman Kingwell, Jessica Kingwell, Sophia Johnston and Layla Nabavi.
Nolan Lehman became the first-ever Pueo competitor in the diving event and finished in eighth place.
Jefferies, meanwhile, won two bronze medals with third place efforts in the 100 fly and 200 individual medley races.
She led the Pueo girls to a tie for eighth place in the overall final standings and a fifth place finish in the Maui Interscholastic League.
Competing along side of Jefferies were teammates Ali Torres, Ember Hirsch, Sammi Shoemaker and Sophie Johnston.
Maui Prep head coach Mike "Tex" Ritter, who was assisted this year by Colleen Jefferies and Becky Hirsch, was naturally elated with the teams' performances.
"The entire team has been an inspiration for me and all the coaches," he said.
"Sky (Hirsch), our team captain, has always been a natural leader with his total competitive drive of a champion, and Danielle (Jefferies) has had a great comeback season after an injury set her back last year. She posted her best times in almost all of her events and is swimming stronger than ever now. I am so proud of her and the entire team - all 21 of them. I know that their best swims are yet to come."