After vigorous workouts and practices, selected swimmers were able to continue on to regionals, and for select members of the AHS swim team, the Virginia State Tournament.
The boys swim and dive team ended the season with a 5-2 record, clearly exhibiting the talent that sent several swimmers moving on to regionals.Students with qualifying times or who made top six at districts moved onto regionals where they competed against the other teams in the area.Individuals or relays with state qualifying times or who were placed in the top six then moved onto states.Nine of the varsity boys swimmers and three divers placed in the top 17.
“It was exciting to go to regionals then states because our region is the best region in the state and being at regionals is basically like being at States minus one southern team,” said senior swim captain Alex Johnson.
“I was pretty happy I got into regionals because it was a big accomplishment,” said sophomore Willie Labarca.
However, practice time for regionals was cut short due to the many snow days, affecting the team’s ability to adequetly prepare.
“We practiced at the pool whenever we had school, practicing three or four times for Regionals before the storm,” said Coach Neal Jarvis.
The 200 meter medley relay of junior Kyle Tyrrell and seniors Sean Smith, Alex Johnson and August McCarthy moved on to states. Senior diver Sean McKinney was also able to advance to the State competition.
“I was excited because states were held at Virginia Beach,” said McKinney.
At states, McKinney made impressive scores and set new personal records. “I got my personal highest score ever, a 521 which was five points from the state record but the kid who beat me got a 540,” said McKinney.The states swimmers earned impressive scores, some setting new school records. Sean McKinney set a new school record by coming in second on the 1 Meter Springboard.Kyle Tyrrell also set a new record by placing 8th for the 100 meter backstroke.The medley relay got 14th place, achieving their best time of the year.
“Swim is the one sport I did all four years and I am happy that I got to end senior year on a high note and doing better than what I had done in my previous years,” says Johnson when reflecting about the team’s many accomplishments.