Coach Koehr is a happy boy.
Even when I came home to Notre Dame’s loss in the ACC Championship game, it did not bring me down. I was that deeply satisfied with what I saw on Saturday.
The two people that made me the happiest were Seton parents Paul Fifield and Bill Dealey who produced an amazingly high-quality live stream of the meet. Every obstacle in life provides an opportunity that you may not have otherwise seen, and the Freedom Center prohibition on spectators at our meet was just the opportunity that Mr. Fifield and Mr. Dealey were looking for. For the first time ever, Seton live-streamed a meet.
The live stream had text displays of lane assignments, scrolling event results, inset views of the scoreboard to show splits, and color commentary and interviews by yours truly. I just watched some of it, and I was blown away by the quality. The recording still lives under About/Videos. You can get the full flavor of the experience if you fast-forward past the first few events where we were still working out a few of the kinks.
Pulling off this live stream was no small feat. Mr. Dealey developed some custom software to export and format entry and result data from the Colorado Timing System (CTS) so that Mr. Fifield could import and reformat the data in his video production software to produce all the text you saw on the screen. I guess Seton Swimming now has our own IT department capable of jamming out 1,000-line Python programs to customize a video broadcast experience. Mr. Fifield used two cameras and two microphones to provide all the angles on the action, all the color commentary and in-meet interviews.
The link to a recording of the Meet Live-Stream will remain on our Seton Swimming Highlights YouTube channel here. (Trivia question: Who is the swimmer in banner of our Seton Swimming Highlights YouTube page?)
The other thing that made me so happy was the almost total lack of chaos – unlike the feeling that I had during our December 12th Invitational. Specific session, lane and pool-end assignments, by kid, for warm-ups helped a lot. We also slowed down the pace of the heats this week (I could see Mr. Seltman twitching 😉). Coach Kimberly Dalrymple enlisted the help of our very talented team managers Sofie Harangozo, Wystan Byers and Ellie Moore along with parents Jessica Morales and Sandy Osilka, to make the flow through the Clerk of the Course much smoother and more spread out. Mr. John Kleb, our veteran announcer who does not even have a kid on the team right now, held sway over the entire event, including what turned out to be the all-important pacing.
In the end though, the Meet was a competitive event, so let us not go much farther without highlighting the results. Once again, Seton was victorious all the way around, including over Division I Diocesan Catholic School John Paul the Great and our DAC Conference rival Trinity Christian School.
Seton Swimming 165.0 Trinity Christian School 119.0
Seton Swimming 183.0 Saint John Paul the Great 88.0
Seton Swimming 227.5 Immanuel Christian School 26.5
Seton Swimming 159.0 Saint John Paul the Great 112.0
Seton Swimming 169.0 Trinity Christian School 99.0
Seton Swimming 187.0 Immanuel Christian School 69.0
On January 9th we shall see how indicative our girl’s victories over Trinity Christian in the first two meets truly were. To be fair, Trinity Christian was missing two of their top swimmers this week, but we too were missing two scoring swimmers – Isabelle Luevano and Mary Clare Waldron.
I mention January 9th because that is the meet where the regular season DAC Conference championship will be decided between the two top contenders, Seton and Trinity Christian. Our girls have won the regular season Conference championship 26 years in a row, so you can probably imagine that I will be taking this meet more seriously than most. Trinity Christian has the talent to win.
It Was Great to Have our Alumni Back
It is so much fun getting the alumni back in the water! This year, in addition to setting up some medley relays, I also set up separate heats of 50 Free. Not surprisingly, the younger swimmers tended to beat the old men – and by old men, I mean over 26 😉
On the boy’s side, we ended up with two medley relays which pitted older Koehr boys against younger Ceol boys. Brothers Alex, Ben and Christian Ceol were joined by sister Jillian Ceol to prevail over the older Daniel, Brendan, Seamus and Shane Koehr.
Actually, Shane and Christian both graduated last year, and it showed in the results of the Boys Alumni 50 Free. Shane was only 1.0 seconds off his PR and won the heat. Christian was just 1.1 seconds over his PR and took 3rd.
Ben Ceol earned redemption by beating his little brother Christian head-to-head this year. Last year, I had a big laugh when Ben remained on the block as the anchor of an alumni relay to wait for Christian to start the anchor leg for our “A” Relay – and then Christian proceeded to beat him!
We also got to see Jeremy Kleb in the water.
On the girl’s side, we got to see Anne Konstanty, Caroline Griffin, Jillian Ceol, Kathleen O’Malley, and Kalli Dalrymple. Anne has been swimming at Franciscan University and it showed as she took the Alumni heat of 50 Free with a time less than a second off her PR from last season.
Finally, we had a coach’s relay entered. The original idea was to have Patrick Dealey and Patrick Mulhern join Ross Palazzo and Jerry Zadnik, but when the two Patricks were unable to make it, Coach Palazzo ended up swimming the first 150 yards himself. 1:32.44 for the first 150 means that he could have very likely finished the entire 200 Medley Relay himself in under 2:00. Not too shabby!
We host our Homecoming Meet every year on the Saturday before Christmas to help build on the great 26-year tradition we have at Seton Swimming. I love to use the opportunity to remind all of us of the people who came before us who got Seton Swimming going – some of whom, like Charles Seltman, are still with us after all these years, and some of whom, like the Pretz (Condon) family, are coming back with the next generation.
See you all next Saturday, December 18, 2021 for our Homecoming next season!
Winning the Close Races Made the Difference
For these early meets, we are working to prepare for the meets later in the season that impact the final outcomes of championships. It would not be unusual for me then to e-mail another coach and try to orchestrate some close races between our swimmers to make it more fun, and better preparation, for everyone.
I did not do that for Saturday’s meet – but with the number of closely seeded races, it looked like I could have. Looking through the results of the meet, I’m quite pleased with the very high percentage of these close races in which we prevailed. I attribute the rather sizeable difference in the scores to the fact that we seemed to win almost every close race on the Psych Sheet.
Here are a number of those close races that made the difference:
- Our Boys 200 Medley Relay of Evan Wilson (SR), Liam Kellogg (SR), Joe Wilson (SO) and Jack Santschi (SR) were seeded within .05 seconds of John Paul the Great at 1:52.05 and 1:52.00, respectively. With the CTS problems early in the meet, I didn’t get splits, but our 1:51.94 was enough to prevail over JPtG’s 1:52.61 to get our boys 1st place overall in the event.
- Our Girls 200 Medley Relay of Lucy Garvey (JR), Clara Condon (8), Angie Testani (8) and Mary Pennefather (SO) were seeded closely to Trinity Christian and ended up winning by more than seven (7) seconds. These girls looked great, but unfortunately the CTS issues early in the meet denied me the splits that I really needed to continue my search for the best combination of girls, and the best order, for this relay. About all I know for sure is that Mary Pennefather is going to bring up the back end, as she always does so powerfully.
- Girls 200 Freestyle – Clara Condon (8) was seeded 2nd in 200 Free between two top Trinity Christian girls, but she ended up pretty much dominating the race, winning by more than three (3) seconds. Her 2:15.13 was a 2.51 second PR over her best USA swimming time. I certainly know that Clara will be swimming breaststroke at the championship level, but it is going to be fun working with her to figure out her second event. The possibilities seem to be pretty broad.
- Girls 200 Individual Medley – Angie Testani (8) was also seeded 2nd between two top Trinity Christian girls in the 200 IM, and she also prevailed – by a dominating 7.29 seconds. Her time of 2:24.61 would have been close to qualifying for the Consolation Final at State last year. Like Clara, we pretty much know that Angie will be swimming breaststroke at the championship level, but what is her 2nd event going to be? We are going to swim lots of different events to try to answer that question.
- Boys 50 Free – Evan Wilson (SR) took a turn as our lead sprinter while I spread Jack Santschi, Liam Kellogg, Jerry Dalrymple and Joe Wilson around to other events. He was very close to his lifetime best which earned 4th place overall, ahead of two JPtG sprinters and the TCS sprinter entered in the race.
- Girls 50 Free – Lucy Garvey (JR), Teresa Mosimann (SR), Teresa Bingham (JR) and Kateri Mantooth (SO) handled sprint duties for us while I pushed Mary Pennefather outside her comfort zone in other events while Isabelle Luevano is still out. Lucy was seeded almost 2.0 seconds behind a former teammate from John Paul the Great, but managed to make it a great race, taking 2nd place by only .25 seconds. The two Teresa’s did their job, taking 3rd and 4th overall ahead of the remaining JPtG swimmers and all of the Trinity Christian entries. Kateri Mantooth (SO) swam a PR to exceed her seed, taking 8th place overall. Teresa Mosimann and Kateri Mantooth sure have been nice additions to our team this year.
- Boys 100 Butterfly – Joe Wilson (SO) and Jack Santschi (SR) took a shot at 100 Butterfly and took 2nd and 3rd Jack’s time was a Personal Record (PR) in spite of our limited training so far this season. Freshman David Hudson (FR) also had a nice PR to finish 5th overall.
- Girls 100 Butterfly – Before the meet, Angie Testani (8) looked to have her hands full in this event against two great young swimmers from Trinity Christian, Reagan Buff (FR) and Liz Klanderman (8), but she ended up finishing almost 2.0 seconds ahead of both with a massive 8.50 second PR. I knew her top USA time of 1:18.04 had to be well slower than what she was capable of swimming, so I am very glad we tried her in this event. The search for Angie’s 2nd event continues.
- Girls 100 Freestyle – We had four (4) close races lined up in this event, and we won all four (4).
- Clara Condon (8) won the event overall by beating a closely seeded sophomore from JPtG by close to 1.5 seconds.
- Maggie Gibbons (FR) was seeded behind TCS sophomore Amy Phillips but prevailed by .28 seconds to take 3rd
- Teresa Mosimann (SR) was seeded almost 3.0 seconds behind a JPtG swimmer, but beat her by .19 seconds after swimming a 1.99 second PR.
- Finally, Kateri Mantooth (SO) held off a fellow sophomore from Trinity Christian by .2 seconds after swimming within .01 seconds of her Personal Records. 100 Free was definitely a good event for Seton on Saturday.
- Girls 500 Free – Lucy Garvey (JR) once again showed her versatility by beating two closely seeded Trinity Christian girls by more than 6.0 seconds to take 1st place overall in the event. Lucy is another swimmer where we will continue to search for the events in which she can be the most competitive at the championship level. Butterfly is probably one of those, but what will be her second event?
- Our Boys 200 Free Relay of Evan Wilson (SR), Liam Kellogg (SR), Jerry Dalrymple (SR) and Jack Santschi (SR) looked very strong, taking 1st place overall by more than 6.0 seconds. All these boys are rapidly moving back toward their top relay splits. With less teams expected to be participating in this year’s virtual State Championship meet, I think they have a chance to score once they get back into championship form with more training.
- Girls 200 Free Relay
- Our “A” Relay of Angie Testani (8), Clara Condon (8), Lucy Garvey (JR) and Mary Pennefather (SO) were pretty dominate in this event in spite of being seeded more than 6.0 seconds behind Trinity Christian (although I strongly suspected the TCS 1:45.00 seed time was not going to happen).
- Our “B” Relay of Teresa Mosimann (SR), Mary O’Malley (SR), Lily Byers (JR) and Kateri Mantooth (SO) also swam quite well, beating both the Trinity Christian “B” Relay and the John Paul the Great “A” Relay. As a group, they swam faster than the sum of the 50 Free PRs which is what you hope for from a relay.
- Boys 100 Backstroke – Max Wilson (8), Connor Koehr (8) and Dominic Miller (8) all swam PRs in 100 Backstroke to jump ahead of a Trinity Christian Senior and a John Paul the Great Junior. They finished 4th, 5th and 6th overall with PRs by .83 seconds, 1.00 seconds, and 6.76 seconds, respectively. That was a particularly nice drop for Dominic Miller. Jerry Dalrymple (SR) took 3rd place overall to complete the inside straight.
- Girls 100 Backstroke – Teresa Bingham (JR), Maggie Gibbons (FR), Lily Byers (JR) and Shannon O’Malley (8) were all seeded in a close race with one of the up-and-coming sophomores from Trinity Christian, and all four (4) finished ahead of her taking 4th through 7th 8th grader Shannon O’Malley had the most impressive swim of the group, dropping 2.40 seconds off of her PR.
- Boys 100 Breaststroke – JJ Brox (SO) looked strong in this event and it showed in the result. He out touched a TCS senior by .70 seconds to take 2nd place overall.
- Girls 100 Breaststroke – we had two close races on the Psych Sheet here and won them both:
- Jaqueline Oswald (SO), who is new to the team this year, was seeded behind one of Trinity Christian’s stronger swimmers, but finished ahead of her in 4th place overall with a .89 second PR.
- Ava Hudson (FR) was seeded behind another TCS senior by more than 3.0 seconds but ended up beating her by more than 1.0 seconds.
Looking back over this list of close races that all went our way, it is easy to see why the Meet result turned out the way it did. I have always said that if we swim PRs, the winning takes care of itself. Here was yet another example of how true that is.
Group 5 Swimmers Show Dramatic Improvement
With the huge influx of swimmers that we had this year – combined with the limitations in the number of kids we could have per lane – even 14 practice lanes proved to be inadequate. That required us to start another practice session on Wednesday and Friday.
At first, I was reluctant to do it because it meant coaching five (5) days per week, but what a blessing it has become! It’s been a long time since I coached swimmers at the beginner level, but I am having so much fun working with swimmers who are so eager to improve!
The coaching has been made so much easier because of the people who have stepped up to help – all of whom called me to help without being asked:
- Coach Jerry Zadnik has coached our beginner swimmers on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays for a decade, so I was very pleased when he volunteered to help. He has a real gift for coaching.
- Virginia Hartung (SR) is a senior captain who started in Coach Zadnik’s lanes when she was in younger and who has advanced to the upper groups through her diligence and hard work. Virginia was a very early volunteer to serve as both the Captain and a Coach for this group. It is great to see her take a subset of the group and work with them on things like diving.
- Madelyn Zadnik (FR) e-mailed me in early December and has been coming to help ever since. I love being able to send a kid with her to work on something specific, and it was very fun to watch her take new swimmer Moira McCardell to the warm-up/warm-down lanes during the meet to help her with her new flip turn.
“Eager to improve” has turned in “massively improving”, as evidenced by the performance of these swimmers on Saturday:
- Christian Ghering (8) saw some massive improvements on Saturday. How about a 21.48 second drop in 100 Free and a 6.89 second drop in 50 Free? So far this season, Christian has dropped over 30 seconds in 100 Free.
- Aidan McCardell (7) showed me something in his first competitive swim meet ever. In 50 Free, he dropped 12.35 seconds which showed me that he could do it. Then, after a tough experience in 100 Free, Aidan came back and swam great in the 200 Free Relay. Way to get back up on that horse Aidan. Never say die!
- Anthony Morales (7) is one of the more impressive stories of Group 5. After dropping more than 26 seconds in 100 Free (10.28 seconds on Saturday) and almost 12 seconds in 50 Free (6.50 seconds on Saturday), his times are have dropped well below 2:00 and 1:00, respectively.
- Monica Hartung (7) has really benefited from her work with big sister Virginia. Monica cut 9.63 seconds in 100 Free and 1.17 seconds in 50 Free in the first competitive swim meet of her life.
- Emma Reynolds (SO) has seen absolutely massive improvements so far this year. On Saturday, she cut 8.19 seconds from her 50 Free PR and 9.24 seconds from her 100 Free PR. So far this season, her improvement totals are amazing – 26.66 seconds in 50 Free and 24.57 seconds in 100 Free.
- Nora Blanchette (7) is starting to get much better control over her head movement, and the results were a 9.19 second PR in 100 Free and a 3.16 second PR in 50 Free. I’m really enjoying Nora’s fun-loving spirit.
- Colette Kramer (7) swam wonderfully this past Saturday, dropping another 8.78 seconds in 50 Free. The previous week, Colette had dropped 8.35 seconds. Keep it up Colette!
- William Reynolds (7) may have the most total improvement of anyone in the group. This past week, he dropped another 8.03 seconds in 50 Free after dropping 41.78 seconds last week!
- Moira McCardell (FR), in spite of having to miss several practices, came to practice last Friday and really picked things up quickly. The result was a 7.97 second PR in 50 Free and a great swim in her first-ever attempt at 100 Free.
- Daniel Hurley (7) has dropped over 12 seconds in 100 Free and over 10 seconds in 50 Free so far this season. On Saturday, he cut 7.11 seconds and 2.77 seconds in those two events, respectively.
- Gabe Hambleton (7) had two great swims that resulted in a 5.80 second PR in 100 Free and a .42 second PR in 50 Free. This is the second week in a row he saw this level of improvement.
- Sophia Kanazeh (JR) is one of the 11 new junior girls that joined the team this season, and I am very much enjoying the sense of purpose that she brings with her to practice. That is why I was so pleased to see her drop 6.44 seconds in 50 Free and 4.20 seconds in 100 Free this week.
- Theresa Byers (JR) is another one of the new junior girls who has brought a certain maturity with her to practice. After some massive drops last week, she managed to drop again. This week, she cut another 2.55 seconds from her 100 Free PR and another .62 seconds from her 50 Free PR.
- Clare (JR) and Christina (7) Witter and Zach Moore (7) have had to miss a lot of our practices, so I am very anxious to see how much they can improve with more work in January.
107 New Personal Records!
The most important sign of victory for me is the level of improvement we see. As we say about the second point of our GEMS: E is for Excellence. We focus on better. Good takes care of itself.
And we got a whole lot of “better” on Saturday – 107 times we were better.
Here are the swimmers who hit a new Personal Record (PR) who I have not already mentioned:
- Jed Albin (FR) beat his 50 Free PR twice, once in the event itself and once leading off a 200 Free Relay. He dropped a total of 2.63 seconds.
- Greg Bauer (7) cut 1.81 seconds from his 50 Free PR.
- Molly Bauer (8) smiled her way to a huge 9.35 second PR in 100 Free.
- Mariana Bingham cut 3.89 seconds in 100 Free to go a very good time for a girl her age.
- Meg Blanchette (8) had a great swim in 100 Backstroke, lowering her PR by 1.99 seconds.
- Emma Brox (JR) was excellent in 100 Free cutting 5.89 seconds off of her PR.
- Michael Brox (8) rocked the 500 Free with a 26.84 second PR. He also cut 2.33 seconds in 200 IM. I can see Michael scoring a lot of points for Seton in the years to come.
- Emma Catabui (JR) moved from the Diving meet to the swimming meet and then cut 5.46 seconds from her 100 Back PR.
- Lucy Cunningham (8) continues to improve, this time by .31 seconds in 100 Back.
- Kyle Da Re (SR) lowered his 50 Free PR by another .88 seconds.
- Rebekah DeWolf (JR) gave me a reason to smile with her 10.08 second drop in 100 Free.
- Josh Fioramonti (7) had a great swim in 100 Backstroke, cutting 3.95 seconds from his PR.
- Mick Fioramonti (FR) had a monster meet that included a 32.28 second PR in 500 Free and a 12.85 second PR in 200 Free.
- Elizabeth Francis (8) had two good swims including a 1.91 second drop in 100 Back and a .76 second drop in 50 Free.
- Anastasia Garvey (7) did not PR in her two superior swims in the 200 IM and the 500 Free, but only because I didn’t have a previous time on her. A 7:14.66 for a 7th grade girl in the 500 Free is excellent!
- Amelia Geary (FR) is back and made the most of it with a 1.51 second PR in 50 Free.
- Jacinta Gonzalez (JR) showed more improvement in 50 Free, lowering her PR by another .83 seconds.
- Max Gonzalez (8) had a killer swim in 100 Backstroke cutting 22.53 seconds from his PR. He also cut another 1.73 seconds from his 50 Free PR.
- Orla Haggerty (8) looked really strong in 100 Back and it showed with her 19.93 second PR. Orla also lowered her 50 Free PR by another .44 seconds.
- Amelie Halisky (SO) swam two (2) PRs. First, she cut .26 seconds in 50 Free, and then she cut .96 seconds in 100 Free.
- Liam Halisky (8) came back with a vengeance, lowering his 100 Free PR by 2.29 seconds.
- Sophia Halisky broke :40 for the first time in 50 Free after her 2.66 second PR.
- Peter Hartung (8) had a big day with PRs in 50 Back leading off a medley (by 13.28 seconds), in 50 Free (by .25 seconds), and in 100 Free (by 3.05 seconds).
- Ava Hudson (FR) had a big drop in 200 Free, lowering her PR by 7.91 seconds. She also dropped .49 seconds in 50 Free leading off a 200 Free Relay.
- David Hudson (FR) was great in two of the more difficult events of the meet. In 200 IM, he lowered his PR by .63 seconds, and in 100 Fly, he lowered his PR by .14 seconds. I can’t wait to see what he can do after some good Christmas break conditioning.
- Shane Hudson dropped a huge 8.61 seconds in 100 Back.
- Liam Kellogg (SR) dropped 1.12 seconds in 200 Free and broke 2:20.
- Seth Kellogg (8) found success in 100 Free, lowering his PR by 1.63 seconds.
- Ceili Koehr (JR) made Dad smile with her .41 second PR in 100 Breaststroke.
- Connor Koehr (8) had another great meet. He lowered his 200 Free PR by 2.78 seconds and his 100 Back PR by 1.00 seconds.
- Chris Lynch (FR) lowered his 100 Free PR by another 3.35 seconds.
- Claire McCardell (JR) is new to the team this season and is already showing big improvement. In 50 Free, she cut another 2.52 seconds from her PR.
- Dominic Miller (FR) broke :30 in 50 Free for the first time after a big 1.75 second PR.
- Joey Munsell (FR) cut .68 seconds in 100 Back.
- Mary Catherine Munsell (7) was swimming like she was 5’10” on Saturday. I was so pleased to see her drop in both 50 Free (by .43 seconds) and 100 Free (by .72 seconds).
- Nicholas Nagurny (FR) cut another .65 seconds in 50 Free to go 28.70, a pretty competitive time for a first-year swimmer. Nicholas also had a great swim in his first attempt at 200 Free, going 2:40.17 – another strong time for a first-year swimmer.
- Kevin Norton (7) made Coach Zadnik proud with his 7.14 second PR in 100 Back and his .91 second PR in 50 Free.
- Jenna Novecosky (SO) was great in only her second competitive swim meet. She dropped 4.19 seconds in 100 Free and 1.12 seconds in 50 Free.
- Mary O’Malley (JR) showed her versatility by scoring in both 100 Fly and 500 Free. Her 100 Fly was a 4.66 second PR.
- Shannon O’Malley (8) broke 3:00 in the 200 IM for the first time after dropping 7.71 seconds.
- Ben Osilka (SO) cut .34 seconds from his 100 Back PR.
- Mary Pennefather (SO) gave 100 Fly a shot this week and improved her PR by 2.10 seconds.
- Jojo Vander Woude (8) continues her rapid improvement, this time with a 3.59 second PR in 100 Backstroke.
- Rose Waldron (8) had two nice PRs on Saturday. In 50 Free, she dropped 1.22 seconds, and in 100 Free, she dropped 1.36 seconds.
- Madelyn Zadnik (FR) cut 1.08 seconds from her 100 Free.
Our great diving coaches Ashley Keapproth and Seamus Koehr are working hard with the team to get as many as possible to be able to do 11 dives. Regular season competition is with 6 dives, but the State Championship requires 11 dives. Since diving counts in the high school swimming rules the same as a swimming event, it could be a huge advantage to us at the State level to be able to score in diving.
I was able to have a discussion with the Freedom Center Aquatics Manager on Saturday to add some opportunities for our diving team:
- We will hold Christmas diving practices right after the Christmas swimming practices on Monday and Tuesday, December 21, 22, 28, and 29.
- Swimming practice for Groups 1 and 2 will go from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
- Diving practice will go from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
- We will hold an 11-dive meet on the morning of February 6th before our VISAA Division II Swimming Invitational. I am still working out the exact times.
- I still need to work this out, but I am hoping to be able to get enough board time to allow 11-dives before our January 23rd meet also.
On Saturday, I could see significant improvement in our Diving team as a whole – a testament to the quality of the program that Ashley and Seamus have developed.
Here are the results from Saturday. Evan Wilson and Tony Hudson really had a great meet, in particular:
- Evan Wilson (SR) 123.70
- Tony Hudson (SR) 119.40
- Connor Koehr (8) 119.35
- Josh Fioramonti (7) 108.90
- Mick Fioramonti (FR) 105.75
- Dominic Miller (FR) 86.85
- Max Wilson (8) 86.55
- Joe Wilson (SO) 64.90
- Jed Albin (FR) 64.20
- Mary Pennefather (SO) 92.50
- Emma Catabui (JR) 72.45
- Amelie Halisky (SO) 53.55
Meekness in Action
In the value system we try to live at Seton Swimming, our GEMS, the 3rd one is Meekness. Meekness is not the timidity or capitulation that we usually think of when we hear the word today. I think what Jesus more likely meant was the spiritual strength to direct your passions toward good. That, of course, implies that you have some passion.
In swimming terms, I like to say that we should always try to win, but we should compete in a way that makes our competitors better also. I see many examples of that every meet, but one example that struck me was a swimmer on another team – Danielle Metzger from Trinity Christian.
Unfortunately, Danielle was entered without a seed time, so she ended up swimming against some of our rapidly improving beginner swimmers. Clearly not a beginner, Danielle finished well ahead of the rest of her heat.
Rather than just savoring victory, I watched Danielle look back and start cheering for the two girls who were fighting through one of their first-ever competitive swimming races – in one case, it was literally her first-ever competitive 50 Free. When our girls finished, Danielle gave them a hearty congratulations.
Sometimes, even the smallest acts of kindness are the ones with the most power. At the next meet, please introduce yourself to me Danielle.
Each season, we always try to build every stroke and every wall (i.e. start and turn) from scratch between Time Trials and Christmas. This year, we were forced out of a lot of practices so we missed a few things (like Butterfly), but based on our progress on Personal Records, I think we can claim success given the circumstances.
Now it is time to start getting in better cardiovascular condition. This is when the harder work begins. For practice groups 1 and 2, that means some challenging Christmas break practices. Please don’t miss – we need the training now in preparation for the championship season.
As a reminder, we are practicing on Monday and Tuesday, December 21/22 and 28/29. Swimming is from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and Diving is from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
For the rest of the team, enjoy your break, get healthy, and come back after Christmas starting with our New Year’s Eve Cystic Fibrosis Swim-a-thon. As of right now, we have lots of teams set up, but not much activity. Here are the current standings in the fundraising competition:
- Team Teresa (Bingham) $210.00
- Team Mary (O’Malley) $150.00
- Team Ceili (Koehr) $25.00
- Team Isabelle (Luevano) $25.00
Let’s get to work for this excellent cause. The Christmas season is a great time for us to try to think of someone other than ourselves. Details are under Meet Information or here.
See some of you at practice and all of you at the Cystic Fibrosis Swim-a-thon.