Determination in the Deep End: A Highlight on Girls Swim

Determination in the Deep End: A Highlight on Girls Swim

While some students have only been in the Yorktown pool for the dreaded swim unit, there are many student-athletes there every single day, training hard. Our school’s girls swim team has put in the work this year, and it has paid off.

The team was undefeated last season and took home the state title for the seventh-straight year. They continued to dominate in the pool this year, winning their eighth state championship with an impressive score of 224 points, which are awarded for performance in relays and individual races.

As if that’s not remarkable enough, the team maintained their winning streak in the regular season, sweeping every meet. This includes triumphs against fellow high schools Washington and Liberty and Wakefield.

Mary Hecmanczuk, a sophomore swimmer and state champion, attributes their success to the swim team’s supportive environment.

“This team is definitely successful because of the community it creates. Our coaches strive to make sure everyone’s included and everyone’s up and cheering,” Hecmanczuk said.

The team is one of the largest in the state, with a roster of 32 swimmers. This is because of their open-door policy, which allows any prospective swimmer to join. Head coach Tori Ortmayer claims that this policy allows for a diversity of talent and a high standard of competition.

In an article for the Washington Post, Ortmayer expands on this claim, stating that the policy allows people who would not typically join a competitive swimming team try it out, and unlock hidden potential.

Though everyone is allowed to participate, not everyone is selected for competitive meets. There are many standout athletes and high point-getters for the team. One of which is Lila Sherman, a freshman, who has already contributed an astonishing 688.76 points to the team and Rachel Conley, a senior, who has won 692.45 points for our school.

While the team should revel in their shared success this season, it’s clear that the work is not done. A number of team members participate in club teams in addition to scholastic sports, meaning that they train during the school offseason.

“I’m a club swimmer, so I swim for two hours every morning [before school],” Hecmanczuk said.

When speaking to athletes, this disciplined training schedule was common across the board. It’s no wonder our swim team continues to command in their events; their practices are extremely rigorous.

“For swimming, normally in the morning, I lift for an hour, and sometimes I have practice at four in the morning … [later] I do technique. I practice every stroke, and then in the afternoon after school, I try to do super hard sets and work endurance,” Sherman said.

While it is obvious that swimming is a demanding sport, our school’s team has certainly shown their determination and great talent this season.

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Maren Leonard
Maren Leonard, Reporter
Maren Leonard is a sophomore reporter entering her first year on staff. She plays soccer and field hockey and enjoys listening to music. She is so excited to write for the Sentry this year and engage with the community.

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