A year of preparation brings swim to regionals

Swim team traveled to Texas A&M swim center on Feb. 1 and 2 in College Station for Regionals. The team had just finished their district meet in which they qualified for the regionals.

The team had been preparing for this opportunity the entire school year and even some time in the summer, bussing back and forth from their practice center and school.

“We start out at Nitro in the morning and then a bus takes over at the end of first period,” junior Gwen Pettis said. “Students shower and dress out in the locker room before heading back to school.”

The team had to compete in various races to qualify for the big competition.

“Everyone is in two relays and two individual races,” Pettis said. “All of our relay teams qualified and almost everyone qualified in at least one individual race.”

The practices leading up to district and regionals are the most intense for the team. Practices have set workouts that the athletes are to compete.

“Whenever we have a big meet, a couple meets before, we have the hardest practices of our season in order to get us in the best shape,” Pettis said. “A few days after the meet, the practices die down a whole lot, and that’s what we call taper.”

A typical swim practice does not look like any ordinary athletic practice here at our school.

“On a typical day, everyone walks in, and we get started at 7:30 a.m.,” Pettis said. “We start getting ready and everyone heads over to their lanes. If we’re not in the water by 7:30, we have push ups we have to do. Each practice has a focus area. One day it will be stroke technique and the next it will be over endurance.”

The swim team looks forward to getting a chance at state after Regionals and what’s in store for their journey they have worked so hard for.

“We didn’t do so hot this time around but we are ready for next year,” Pettis said. “We will keep working towards state with each practice.”