By Reach for the Wall staff.
In addition to Zones, many of the top swimmers from PVS will participate this week in either the 2017 Eastern Zone Southern Region Sectional Meet in Christiansburg, Virginia (March 30 – April 2) or the 2017 Speedo Sectional Championships in Buffalo, New York (March 30 – April 2). The Sectionals meet in Christiansburg is a short course (25 yards) meet while the Sectionals meet in Buffalo is a long course (50 meters) meet.
To understand Sectionals, remember that USA Swimming divides the country into four Zones (Eastern, Central, Southern and Western), and each zone holds championship invitational meets at the end of the winter and summer seasons for select age group and senior swimmers within that zone. While “Zones” are zonal championship meets for age group swimmers, “Sectionals” are zonal championship meets for more senior swimmers who achieve the qualifying times.
Although each zone generally holds only one Zones meet at the end of each winter and summer season, each zone may host several Sectionals meets throughout the zone region at the end of each season in order to control the size of these meets or to offer swimmers the option of racing in short or long course pools. For example, for the winter, short course season, the Eastern Zone hosts only one Zones meet (i.e., the Zones meet that takes place this week in Webster, New York), but hosts three separate Sectionals meets: the long course meet in Buffalo, the short course meet in Christiansburg, and another short course meet in Ithaca, New York. The Christiansburg short course meet is open to swimmers in the southern part of the Eastern Zone, while the Ithaca short course meet is for swimmers in the northern part of the Eastern Zone.
Or, here’s another way to think about Sectionals. The path to the Olympics begins at the Junior Olympics (JOs), progresses to Zones and Sectionals, and then moves onto the “national” stage at “Futures” and Junior Nationals. The graphic at the right summarizes this path.
Key Meet Info
Below is key information about the upcoming Sectionals meets in Christiansburg and Buffalo:
- 2017 Short Course Sectionals (South)
March 30-April 2, 2017, Christiansburg, VA
- 2017 Long Course Sectionals
March 30-April 2, 2017, Buffalo, NY
For those going to either of these two Sectionals meets, please send pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can post them.