Girls’ Swim and Dive is Ready For Conference

Devon Fitzgerald

After losing 15 swimmers to graduation and transferring, this year’s swim team hasn’t lost any momentum. As the reigning conference champions, they hope to reclaim the title, but “this year is really a rebuilding year for us,” said co-captain senior Sarah Koch.

In an effort to build up the younger swimmers and keep the more experienced girls conditioned, the swim team practices six days a week for two and a half hours, full of “a long warm-up and continuous sets,” said Koch.
The intense practices paid off at a recent meet against St. Louis Park, the team’s main competition. Even though they lost, it was very close, and “everyone did amazing,” said junior Annabelle Javellana.

With the most challenging meet over, the team continues to work hard, preparing for the conference meet in November. For a team with only three seniors and several young members, including a handful of junior high students, reclaiming their conference title will be a daunting task, but one they are up for.
As the captains, plus head coach Damon Carrison, try to instill punctuality (getting everyone to the St. Louis Park Community Center pool by 3 p.m. is a challenge), they will also continue to build up the team’s endurance and help with the mental aspect of swimming.
“It’s not just about being physically prepared, but mentally, too,” said Koch, “A good swimmer is very committed, has a positive attitude, and wants to be at practice.”
As hard as the team works, they like to have fun too. Recently, they “skipped” a day of pool practice, playing games outside instead. “Every year the team makes a list, A to Z, of why we should play games instead of practice. Normally it doesn’t work, but this year our list was really good,” said Javellana.
While the girls used to go to Chicago for a weekend, they now have a team sleepover, thrown by the captains. The night consists of food, music, movies, and games, and “last year we had a big dance party,” said Koch.

The girls’ swim team knows how to have fun, while still staying mentally and physically focused in practices and in meets. They are looking forward to the rest of a successful season and to hopefully continue their streak as conference champions.