Swim Team – It’s a Party!

Ben Bliss

For those on the BC High swim team, “It’s a party. It’s a great party,” as captain Connor Geise informed me. These swimmers love their sport, and it is shown through their sacrifice and commitment towards it everyday. For instance, one and a half hour practices are either held at the MIT or Weymouth pools, which means at least an extra 30 minute commute to get there. Freshman swimmer Jake Gabriel seems to think that it’s worth it, stating that the “MIT pool is incredible, It’s huge.” In that practice environment, Jake is already seeing improvements in his times. His favorite and best event is the 50 meter freestyle, in which he shaved 0.4 seconds off of his previous record of 28.24 seconds. Although the difference may seem minuscule, it can change the outcome in a sport where winners are decided by hundredths of seconds. To compare, the fastest 50 free time on the team is around 23 seconds according to Jake. Just like many of the teams and clubs at BC High, swim helps create new bonds and makes teammates feel like they belong. When asked about his favorite part, Jake replied, “The atmosphere is supportive and it is an overall enjoyable experience to be with the team.” This attitude carries over to the pool, and it is one of the reasons why the swimmers feel like they are at “a great party” when together. Their first three meets were in Natick, Needham, and St. John’s Prep, but unfortunately, they all resulted in losses. At the St. John’s Prep meet, Jake decided to experiment with his events, dropping the 50 free and testing his skills in the breast stroke and individual medley. The IM is 200 meters and a combination of all 4 strokes: Butterfly, back, breast, and freestyle in that order. The next meet was at home on January 7th, which ended similarly to the others. On the bright side, Jake recorded a new personal best for the 50 free at 27.20 seconds. This is a 0.64 second improvement from his record stated above, and it only took Jake a couple weeks to make this significant impact. After the previous loss, the swim team turned it around and went on an incredible 4 meet win streak. They beat Catholic Memorial, Xavier, St. John’s Shrewsbury, and Malden Catholic, bringing them to a .500 record. On January 30th, they competed in the Catholic Conference meet. This was a success, as the team finished in second place out of five teams, coming in only behind St. John’s Prep who greatly outnumbered them. That was the final meet of the season for most, but certain swimmers were selected for regionals and states. One interesting thing about swimming is how one’s progress is a written fact that they can view at anytime and see how far they’ve come. Surely the freshmen on the team will look back at their times as seniors, and they will be able to track all their hard work over the years with just a few numbers.