AUGUSTA — A handful of young Midcoast swimmers continue to make quite a name for themselves in a pool in Central Maine and are so talented in the water they have won state championships and, in some cases, will test their mettle against national competition.

Kailin Fuller of Camden, as well as Oona Stewart, Rowan Stewart and Cabot Adams of Appleton, have excelled as members of the Kennebec Valley YMCA swim team.

Fuller, Oona Stewart and Adams are age 16, while Rowan Stewart is 13. Fuller and Adams are juniors and Oona Stewart a sophomore at Camden Hills Regional High School in Rockport. Rowan Stewart is an eighth-grader at Appleton Village School. The Stewarts are sisters.

Kailin Fuller, left, and swim coach Mike Schmidt. Photo courtesy of Tara Wagner

After dealing with pandemic-related issues, like all athletes, the past few years, the group had a strong 2021-22 season for KVY, especially Fuller, who grew up in the Hope/Camden area and is one of the state’s finest freestyle sprinters.

At the state YMCA championships on Saturday, March 5 at the Bath Family YMCA, Fuller finished as a triple state champ in the 15-18 age group 50 (24.45) and 100 (54.62) freestyles, as well as the 200 medley relay (1:50.59). Oona Stewart was a member of that state relay.

Fuller has swum since age 8 and started at the Penobscot Bay YMCA in Rockport. She switched to KVY at age 13 to train for nationals. She qualified for the nationals at ages 14 and 15, but those meets were canceled due to COVID-19.

Fuller will compete in the difficult-to-qualify-for YMCA nationals in Greensboro, N.C. in late March/early April.

Fuller has qualified for the nationals in the 50 free and hopes to qualify in the 100 free at the Winter Championships, a four-day Maine USA championship meet Friday through Sunday, March 18-20 at Long Reach Swim Club in Bath. The meet is a competitive, qualifying event that includes the state’s top swimmers.

Fuller also qualified for nationals in two relays, the 200 free relay, which includes Rowan Stewart, and the 200 MR, which includes Oona Stewart swimming butterfly. Fuller anchors those relays in freestyle.

At the state YMCA championships, Rowan Stewart finished first in the 13-14 age group 200 individual medley (2:17.48), 100 breast (1:09.81) and swam the breast on the winning medley relay team (1:56.35). Oona Stewart was third in the 100 backstroke (1:00.65) and butterfly (1:01.96) in the 15-18 age group. Adams was fifth in the 15-18 200 IM (2:09.99), seventh in the 100 fly (57.82) and 11th in the 100 breast (1:07.83).

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