By: Riley Holles
The Quaker Valley swim team’s latest feat was the MACs swim meet on Feb. 5 where they achieved a first place win for the girls and fifth place for the boys. Furthermore, all three of the girls’ relay times were fast enough to qualify for the WPIAL meet on Feb. 25. These times made the A cut, which means the girls will automatically compete in the regional WPIAL meet in hopes of making it to the state meet.
The boys hit the B cut for 2 of their relays, which means that they are alternates for the WPIAL meet. Finally, congratulations are in order for sophomore Emily Connors, who broke the school record in the 100 Butterfly. With the final meets of the season under their belts, the girls have won section champs for the third year a row!
Success for QV’s swim team has become a regular occurrence. Last year, both the girls 200 medley and 400 freestyle relays made it to the state meet and set school records. This year, the girls team has only lost two meets, which is an impressive record. Junior Ella Fuener said, “This year we are seeded high for WPIALS and hope to keep improving!”
The swim season this year looks a bit different than years past due to the continuation of COVID-19. Safety protocol this year required anyone with or in close contact with COVID positive results to sit out from all practices and meets for at least five days. This made it difficult to be consistent this year with the many absences. Nonetheless, the team was able to persist and still turned out amazing results by the end of the season.
Another challenge COVID presented was that the WPIAL A cut times were lowered in hopes of making the regional meet smaller. The swimmers of the QV team did not let this stop them from hitting those times. Fuener explained that the team has adapted to practicing in a pandemic over the past two years. “This year is much better than last year in terms of practice and meet time, so we are excited to see how our team races in these final meets of the season.”
The QV swim program is unique in that it is a combined team with Sewickley Academy. This does not stop the team from creating a tight-knit, community feeling. Freshman Louisa Webster’s favorite part of swimming this season has been the team bonding experiences. “It’s mostly just team dinners, but it’s so nice to hang out with the team members out of the water!” she said. The team supports each other tremendously, and even injured swimmers still attend meets and practices to cheer on their team. As the team heads into the final meet of the season, they hope that all of their hard work will pay off with one final win to an amazing season.