The Southwestern swim team is beginning the end of their five month season. In November and December, the team was training at the highest intensity of the year. Increased yardage of up to seven miles a day with fast paced training intervals and little rest causes swimmers to push their bodies, build strength and train their pace at different distance levels.
Increased yardage in peak training can cause extreme fatigue, but many SU swimmers have been achieving season best times even when their bodies have been pushed to the limit.
“Winter training consisted of swimming, eating, sleeping, swimming again, then eating more, and sleeping. We also did more dryland than usual, which was intense. Our afternoon practices were in an outdoor pool, so it was nice to get a tan. And of course winter training always brings the team together on a different level,” sophomore Christine Moody said.
The semester started with a meet against UT-Permian Basin.
First-year Elizabeth Lewis won the 1,000 yard freestyle, setting a new school record and dropping 19 seconds from her season best time.
First year Melissa Nelson had a personal best as well in the 200 freestyleand 100 butterfly. Two more personal best times were achieved by Sarah McClausand in the lead of the 200 medley relay and the 100 breastroke. Junior Michele Comerota and senior
Stephanie Morton finished first and third in the 100 yard freestyle, respectively.
“I am a swimmer because I enjoy the challenge of not only trying to out swim a competitor but to also out swim myself. Every day a new challenge arises. Every day you try to be better than the day before. My teammates are my main source of motivation. They help push me past my limits. A little friendly competition at practice is also a fun way of staying focused,” Comerota said.
The women’s team took first over UT-Permian Basin, and the men’s team took second. First-year Stephen Montes placed first in the 1,000 freestyle.
First-year Patrick Flannagan captured another first place in the 50 yard freestyle and first-year Thomas Newman swam season best times in the 100 yard freestyle and 100 yard breastroke. Senior Jon LaRochelle also swam a personal best time in the 200 yard individual medley.
“The main thing to focus on now is confidence. We have been training hard all year. Now we need to trust our work and swim hard,” said Comerota.
The Incarnate Word Invite took place this past weekend with a session on Friday and another two sessions on Saturday morning and evening.
“I hope to see personal bests from everyone on the team at SCAC. We have been swimming so well all year and I know all of our hard work will pay off. I am ready to make a statement and show the other teams how strong we are,” Comerota said.
The next home meet will be Feb. 6 at 1 pm against McMurray University. The SCAC championship will take place Feb. 18, 19, and 20, and the Pirates are excited to show what they have got.