Men’s and Women’s swim squads get team spirit through practice meet

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    By KRISTEL LANDER

    Team spirit and competition combined to create a fun intersquad practice meet for the men’s and women’s swim teams Friday.

    “There is a lot of competition among team members, but our team is really close,” swimmer Joshua Johnston said.

    Although the swimmers were not too thrilled with their racing times, they were not too disappointed either, team member Amanda Grant said. The teams worked hard in practice the past few weeks, so team members felt broken down and tired at this meet.

    Despite being worn out, the swimmers enjoyed the low pressure, relaxed event filled with encouraging fans and team members. Whistles, cheers and yells created a surround-sound type room of excitement. High fives went all around, and the BYU swimmers bonded.

    “It really make a difference to have people encouraging you. If you don’t have team spirit to pump you up, you usually don’t swim your best. It’s hard to mentally get ready for a race by yourself,” Grant said.

    Team members have been encouraging each other all semester during their intense practices. Team members sometimes wonder if they will survive the rigorous training, but they cling to the hope that someday all the practice will pay off. The swimmers try to help each other through the practices.

    “Someone is always there to lift you up. Someone is always there to make you laugh. That way you don’t get too bummed out when practice is really hard,” Johnston said.

    The individuality of team members has created a team with depth, Johnston said. Depth is shown by the fact that the teams have at least one and sometimes several strong swimmers in every event.

    Part of the depth also comes from the new freshmen on the teams. Team members agree the freshmen are excellent. The freshmen add talent and vitality and potential to all the teams.

    “The new freshmen are incredible. As a senior, I am a lot more excited now that we have some new blood on the team,” diver Devan Porter said.

    The BYU swimmers are excited to begin official meets soon. The women’s team will have their first competition meet next weekend and the men’s team will start the week after.

    “I’m ready to see what college swimming is all about,” freshman Johnston said.

    Johnston said BYU locker rooms aren’t quite like Texas locker rooms, but he likes the change. However, he said college practices are a lot harder and longer than what he was used to in high school. Porter agreed that being on the swim team is tough, but he said it’s worth it because team members learn so much from being on a team at the BYU level.

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