The 14th Military Police Brigade took home the 2019 Commander’s Cup Swim Meet championship trophy Saturday, earning a 1-point victory over their nearest competitors, the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence, after 12 events.
Leading from the beginning of the meet, the 14th MP Bde. saw their lead dwindle as the MSCoE team took first or second in several events in the second half. While the MSCoE team won the final event — the 200-meter medley relay — to bring their point total to 130, the 14th MP Bde. team finished the event less than a second behind to take second place in the relay and finish with 131 points overall.
“We knew we had to come in either first or second (in the relay) to win,” said Chris Ollis, 14th MP Bde. coach. “Our swimmers really gave it all they had — it was all heart. They did an awesome job.”
The 14th MP Bde. took first place in the opening 400-meter freestyle relay and went on to win the 100-meter breaststroke, the 50-meter butterfly, and the 200-meter freestyle relay, while taking second in seven events, including the 100-meter freestyle, the 100-meter backstroke, the 200-meter freestyle relay, the 50 meter breaststroke and the final relay. They also tied the MSCoE team for second place in the 50-meter backstroke and the 50-meter freestyle.
Ollis had planned to compete himself but ended up on coaching duty after hurting his arm. Wearing a sling, he cheered his teammates on to victory.
“It was awesome to get this many volunteers to come out and swim for us,” Ollis said. “I was supposed to compete, but I hurt myself. We were very fortunate to find swimmers to come in and fill the gap.”
Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Chief of Sports Coleman Swinton presented the championship trophy to Ollis and 14th MP Bde. team members Courtney Franks, Drake Bistro, Julie Means, Sarah Locke, Patricia Ollis and Drake Johnson.
The MSCoE team, which included Scott Werkmeister, Doug Kaiser, Dan Allen, Adam Leemans, Tom Magruder and David Henderlite, received the second-place trophy. MSCoE took first place in more events than any other team, winning the 100-meter freestyle, the 100-meter backstroke, the 200-meter freestyle relay, the 50-meter breaststroke, the 200-meter freestyle and the 200-meter medley relay. However, MSCoE was perpetually behind the 14th MPs, having not participated in the opening 400-meter relay.
The 31st Engineer Battalion, which included a number of international swimmers from a British contingent studying here, placed third with 108 points.
MEDDAC was in fourth place with 91 points, which included a sweep of the 50-meter freestyle event.
The swim meet was the sixth event in the 2019 Commander’s Cup series, which will continue with basketball and bowling tournaments following the end of the intramural seasons in those sports. The next stand-alone event on the Commander’s Cup sports calendar is the Commander’s Cup Combatives Tournament, tentatively scheduled May 7 through 9. Military units must have their sports representatives file a letter of intent to compete in the tournament with the Sports Branch by May 1.
For more information about the Commander’s Cup series of events, call DFC at 573.596.4359.