Jiahua Chen ’20
The Boys Varsity Swimming and Diving team is leaving opponents in its wake with a strong start to the season, earning themselves a decisive 101-76 win against Avon in its first meet at home. Reminiscent of last year’s first meet, which ended in a 101-74 win against Avon, the team appears to be on track for another successful season.
Last year, the team lost several strong Senior swimmers, and experienced and newer swimmers alike will have to step up and fill the gaps they left behind. Despite the changes, co-captain Leo Poggi ’20 is happy with the team’s progress this season, commenting, “The most noticeable difference between the team last year and this year is the size of the roster. This year especially, we have a smaller group of guys. However, we’ve maintained the same positive and hard-working mentality that drove us last year.”
Currently, the team has 17 swimmers and divers. Despite the disadvantages that come with the team’s relatively small size and the challenge of integrating new members, there is also an opportunity to redefine and invigorate the spirit and culture of the team as a whole. Incorporating this younger base and influx of new talent will be key to success in future meets as well as serving as a solid foundation for future years. Poggi said, “So far, I’ve been impressed with the team. We are relying on a younger base, mostly Preps and Lower Mids, but the team has still performed well, despite that relative lack of…experience compared to other teams and last year’s roster.”
New swimmers, along with new Assistant Coach Annie Hall, have already demonstrated the large role they are playing in the team. Standout swimmers in the Avon meet included Jeffrey Lim ’21, with second and first place finishes in the 200 IM and 100 butterfly, respectively, and Carter Levine ’22, who secured a second place finish in the 100 breaststroke event only days after joining the team. Head Coach Keith Moon is pleased with the team, saying, “There is a real fighting spirit of working hard and trying to improve. Swimming is an individual sport in many ways, but we are also a collective team and unit.”
The boys will face many challenges and strong swim teams in the near future. Although improvement will always remain the top priority, Mr. Moon is optimistic about the team’s prospects this season. He said, “We are always trying to swim faster, while supporting each other. If we can win some meets on the way, in Founders and New Englands’, that would be great.”