Hawaii swimmer passes away in season opener, BYU falls to Hawaii

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BYU swim and dive lost to the University of Hawaii in their first meet this weekend, however, Hawaii’s victory was tainted by the passing away of one of Hawaii’s swimmers.

Junior Peter Chi was discovered in his dorm room early Saturday morning after having fallen victim to cardiac arrest.

Chi, who placed fifth in the breaststroke just one day earlier, had previously been diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White-Syndrome: a rare condition that causes rapid heart rate.

“Peter was an outstanding student athlete and even more importantly a great person,” University of Hawaii Swimming Head Coach said in a press release. “He was loved and respected by all his teammates and will forever have a place in our program.”

Chi similarly had an incident two years ago in which he was sent to the hospital after swim practice when his heart stopped.  The incident kept Chi from being able to swim for several weeks until he gradually worked his way back into the pool.

Earlier this year Chi earned the Inspiration Award at a scholarship dinner after overcoming the setbacks of his condition.

“Anything can happen to anybody, ” Chi said in his acceptance speech posted on YouTube. “What you really have to do is live your life to the fullest.  Don’t take anything for granted because you never know.”

The team plans to hold a memorial service this week.

Hawaii won with a score of 206-146 for the women’s team and the tight competition for the men resulted in a score of 183-168.

Despite BYU’s loss to Hawaii, Coach Brooks is optimistic about future performance.

“Friday was tough,” Brooks said in a press release. “We were feeling the effects of jet lag and were a little tired. But we came out ready to swim on Saturday, were excited and swam better. I was happy with the way we finished out the meet strong.”

Freshman Alexandria Sorenson placed first in the 50 free, with Payton Sorenson following suit as he also won the 50 free for the men.

Hayden Palmer and Preston Jenkins were both two-time individual winners.  Palmer won both the 200 and 400 IM, while Jenkins won the 100 and 200 back.

Kimberly Welch Doroghian placed first in the 100 fly and Hailey Campbell won the 200 back with teammates in fourth and fifth.

The men won three out of four relays consisting of the 200 free relay, the 400 free relay, and the 400 medley relay.

In diving, Nicholas Suder won first in the one-meter and three-meter. Edward Young placed third in both events, and Dayna Christensen won the three-meter and placed third in the one-meter.

The next meet for the Cougars will be Friday at 6 p.m. at the Richards Building pool.

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