When Angela Marina was chosen to Team Canada back in June, she was “speechless.”
The Cambridge swimmer had something to say in the pool on Friday, when she swam her first Paralympic final, finishing sixth in the S14 200-metre freestyle in 2:15.43, bettering her sixth-place qualifying performance of 2:16.19.
Russian Paralympic Committee’s Valeriia Shabalina claimed first, clocking 2:03.71, while Great Britain cleaned up second, third and fourth.
Tokyo 2020 is Marina’s first Paralympics.
“I’m speechless,” she told the Brantford Expositor in June after being selected for Team Canada. “It’s a dream come true. I can’t believe I did it.”
The Cambridge, Ont. native made her debut in the 100-metre butterfly qualifiers on Wednesday, finishing 11th with a time of 1:12.00.
Marina’s initial appearance at a major games was at the 2019 Parapan American Games in Lima, where she captured two golds and a silver.
In Tokyo, Marina will also compete in the 100-metre breaststroke (SB14), 200-metre individual medley (SM14) and the 100-metre backstroke (S14).
The freestyle and butterfly have been Marina’s strongest races in the past, leading her to both golds in Lima, three at the 2017 Canada Summer Games, and first place at the 2018 Para Pacific Swimming Championships where she broke a Canadian record in the 200-m freestyle.
Other swims have had their moments too. The 22-year-old made the podium with a silver in backstroke at the Parapan American Games, and won seven medals at the 2017 Canada Summer Games.
Competing next in breaststroke, Marina is back in Tokyo’s pool Saturday morning, or 8:20 p.m. EST.
The individual medley is scheduled for 8:40 p.m. Monday, and backstroke is at 9:20 p.m. Wednesday, both times in EST.