By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Jawin' w/Jagada Barracudas Are A Sight To See
Placeholder Image
If you have a hectic schedule during the week and Friday evening is that point in the week where you truly make that valiant attempt at letting your work worries go and dive head first into a relaxing weekend, well, you need to set up an appointment with the Riverbank Barracudas.

In one of the most structured recreation department athletic leagues in the area, the Riverbank Barracudas team up with the recreation swim clubs from Escalon and Delhi to put on a show for the ages week in and week out.

Talented swimmers from the tiny ages of four to the early teens surround the pool with the anxiety and excitement that can only accompany a competitive sporting event.

The swimmers are in the rec department league, but they are clearly Olympic hopeful swimmers.

These kids flat out get after it.

Never will the casual fan get the opportunity to share a laugh with hundreds of others when an over-anxious speedster forgets to strap up his goggles until the chlorine reminds him and two of tomorrow's stars put on an epic battle each time they hop in the pool alongside one another.

The super-shortened summer swim season leaves the Barracudas at the end of their four-meet schedule with Escalon and Delhi this Friday, but it's all the more reason to make the short trek to Escalon to help cap off a quality season.

Times have improved throughout the year; the Riverbank coaching staff has thrived in the capacity of taking these kids to a higher level in the pool. Scott Bryan and Tristin Long are not just out there to test sunblock and keep kids in line.

These guys care. They want the swimmers to do well and the kids respond.

Usually one of those quality IM relay's will get the blood boiling and the adrenaline flowing, only to have those feelings squashed by the 25-free race which loads the lanes full of my favorite swimmers.

The four-year-olds with goggles.

Most of the little guys and girls are really making an effort to finish the race victorious. It might seem like a stretch from where you're reading right now, but I've been on the wall when those kids finish that lap and all of them look around.

You know how they've been doing in those Olympic trials; the kids do the same thing. Wall, look left then right, and then they, as cool as anybody exiting the pool, quietly coast to the stairs in preparation to get out of the pool to a guaranteed raucous ovation.

The little guys usually garner the biggest applause, that's just how it goes.

People of Riverbank, you may have just one final chance to start your weekend the way everybody on earth should ... watching a Riverbank Barracudas swim meet.

They hit the pool at 6 p.m. Aug. 1 in Escalon.

Jagada Chambers is a staff reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Riverbank News and The Escalon Times. He may be reached at or by calling 847-3021.