Swim team pushes for district qualification


Atoms practice for their final meet against Mount Vernon

As the new year begins, the winter sports program enters its most crucial period.  Students anticipate upcoming district and regional competitions as most view as the climax of the season.  The Annandale Swim and Dive team is grateful to have experienced a successful season thus far in spite of the pandemic. The team strives to secure a winning season prior to the district and regional meets.  Students will participate in the Swim and Dive team’s final dual meet on Jan. 22 against Mount Vernon High School.  This would prompt the first winning season under the team’s new head coach.  

Following the last official season meet, the championship season begins with Districts on Fri. 1/29 and Sat. 1/30.  A regional competition stands as a potential opportunity Wed. 2/3 and Thurs. 2/4. The boys team currently holds a record of 2-2 and the girls team holds a record 1-3. 

Though, through previous years students would train four days per week, members now attend two to three days of swim practice per week.  The program has incorporated dry-land training in order to compensate for losses of aquatic training due to COVID safety regulations.  Students must be ten feet apart while in the water and are obligated to keep masks relative to the pool. 

Freshman Colin McGee endures his second High School athletics season and first as a member of the Annandale Swim and Dive team.  

“We are lucky to have a swim season and are making the most of it,” McGee said. 

The team is thankful to have the opportunity to engage in a swim season and values the chances to compete through the COVID regulations. 

“Districts and Regionals are coming soon and we are looking to swim our fastest now to prepare for those meets,” McGee said.

Senior TJ Hutnan experiences his fourth and final season amidst the Swim and Dive team yet remains dissatisfied with the season’s presentation. 

 “I have been pretty pessimistic about the season,” Hutnan said.  “But now, everything seems to be normal and the coaches have been great.”  

Hutnan explains the consequences of the virus noting the team “would have to stop cheers” because it involves contact of “the team and the opposing school.” In addition,  Hutnan believes his team may be able to push toward districts. 

 “We have some fast freshmen so I think we will do well on our relays,” Hutnan said.  

New Head Coach Carmine Lucas, has deep excitement for what is to come in the remainder of the season.

 “I’m very excited to be the head coach of our swim and dive team! This is my fourth year working for this team,” Lucas said.  “I wouldn’t trade it for the world, I’m also so lucky to have an amazing coaching staff this season with Coach Padgett and Coach Gokturk as my assistant swim coaches and Coach Julio as our dive coach. We all work together through each week and teamwork makes the dream work!”

Lucas is confident in her team to make progress in regional and district competitions. 

“I know we will have a competitive meet this Friday against Mt Vernon – our swimmers and divers have shown an awesome commitment to the compressed season and have worked very hard,”  Lucas said.  “We’re looking at a very different championship season due to Covid for Districts.  It will be short and intense but we are up for the challenge!”