Swim team dives into season


photo or infographic by Blaine Eckert

ON THE BLOCKS. Wildkat swimmer senior Brooks Cesan take his mark to begin the race.

The voice from the loudspeaker echoes through the natatorium, “swimmers, take your mark.” The light flashes and a loud buzzer sounds. The eight swimmers leap into the previously calm water and the race begins.

The Willis Aquakats competed in their first district meet against Grand Oaks and Oak Ridge Thursday, October 13. It was a close matchup, with the Grizzlies and War Eagles bringing their best to the competition, but the team pulled through for one of the best performances the team had ever seen.

WINNER, WINNER. Making her way down the pool, junior Addison Lyons swims at the first meet of the season against Oak Ridge and Grand Oaks. Lyons finished 1st in the 200 Free and was 2nd in 500 Free. (photo or infographic by Blaine Eckert)

“I think the team did great at our first meet getting into the zone for the season,” junior Keddie Ramsden said. “Especially for the new people getting used to high school swimming.”

The nervous feeling is common across all sports, but swimming is one of the few sports that can rid athletes of the feeling in a very short amount of time.

“Swimming at swim meets is very nerve-wracking,” junior Addison Lyons said. “But as soon as you get in the water, the nerves go away and you end up swimming at your best.”

The student-athletes that selected swimming as the athlete portion of their day choose to swim because of the ability to watch their improvement over time.

“Swimming is a really good sport,” senior Peyton Sewell said. “You’re able to see your improvement as time goes on and you can watch your time drop and see how hard you are working. I really enjoy being able to see my improvement over time.”

SIDELINE CHEERS. Offering support to his swimmers, Coach Dana Fossmo with sophomore Carli Murray yells and claps at the meet on Oct. 13 (photo or infographic by Jason Clark)

Though swimming is easily accessible from a young age, most swimmers don’t pursue the sport and join a swim team. Those that do find themselves on the path to aquatic excellence.

“I started to swim when I was two, and I just haven’t stopped,” junior Riley Rick said. “Growing up with swimming, I’ve learned a lot more with a team and about teamwork.”