Living the Dream: Wolfville Tritons swimmer going to Canada Games with Team Nova Scotia


Published on May 25, 2017

Wolfville Tritons Swim Club member Ava Vial says she was excited to get the news that she has qualified to swim with Team Nova Scotia at the Canada Games.

©Kirk Starratt

WOLFVILLE, NS - After years of hard work and determination, she’s punched her ticket to Winnipeg to swim with Team Nova Scotia at the Canada Games.

Swimming is a really hard sport and it takes lots of dedication to do it. The main thing to keep going forward is the environment you’re in.

Ava Vial

15-year-old Ava Vial of Port Williams said she’s been swimming for nine years with the Wolfville Tritons Swim Club, competitively for about four years.

A Grade 9 student at Horton High, she’s among four swimmers from the club who have qualified to represent the province as part of Team Nova Scotia at the Canada Games. The others include 13-year-old Gabriel Graves, 14-year-old Bo Stokesbury-Price and 16-year-old Matthew Bent. The games are being held in Winnipeg in August.

Vial said that one night in late April, she was very excited to find out while visiting the Swim Nova Scotia website that she had made the team. Vial said she immediately went to tell her family the good news.

“It hasn’t really soaked in yet,” Vial said. “I feel like once I get there I’m going to be like, whoa, this is a big accomplishment.”

Vial competed at the Eastern Canadian championships along with approximately 800 other swimmers in Toronto in April. She considers this perhaps her greatest accomplishment as a swimmer so far.

Vial said she loves swimming. She finds it a lot of fun and she enjoys the social aspect of the sport. You meet a lot of people with similar interests and you make a lot of friends. She said there was never a time when she lost interest in swimming.

Vial said she would be mainly competing in the breaststroke at the Canada Games, along with the individual medley. There is a lot of work involved, as she trains every morning from Tuesday to Saturday and every evening from Monday to Friday. Sunday is her only day off.

“Swimming is a really hard sport and it takes lots of dedication to do it,” Vial said. “The main thing to keep going forward is the environment you’re in.”

She said the Tritons provide a very supportive environment for young swimmers to develop their skills and she has really enjoyed the experience. The coaches are “amazing”, pushing swimmers as far as they can go.

Coach Moira Milward said swimmers qualify for Team Nova Scotia based on age and the accumulation of FINA (International Swimming Association) points. Point values are assigned to swimming performances in reference to the latest world record approved by FINA. Base times are defined annually.

Milward said it means a lot to the club to have four swimmers qualify for Team Nova Scotia. Considering that the Tritons are a small club in comparison to others, this is a great per capita accomplishment.