Girls swim team overcomes adversity to start season


Thomas English, Sports Media class

After having a 4-3 season this past year and multiple swimmers place at the sectional meet, the girls swimming team looks to continue their success while battling all of the issues presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

On Sept. 4, the girls started off their 2020 season with a tough loss to a strong Plainfield team. But they remain optimistic that the rest of their season will be a very successful one. 

“Overall I was very pleased with how we swam,” head coach Andrew Porth said. “It was great just being able to see the girls compete, I was so happy for the seniors.”

The team was grateful for the opportunity to swim this year amongst the many concerns regarding COVID-19. IHSA had to make a difficult decision to cancel the state meet and the team was unsure of the chance of their season even occurring when one of their swimmers tested positive for COVID. 

“One week into our season, someone on the team tested positive for COVID-19, so we had to take a two week break and it messed up the ‘pre-season’ training a lot,’” senior captain Nia Yost said. 

With one member of the team testing positive, the outlook on the upcoming season was unclear. The chance of them not having a season was high, but the girls continued to prepare themselves mentally and physically for the season that lay ahead. 

Senior Ava Adams was looking forward to competing at state this year after having a strong junior campaign. 

“My original goal would be to go to state but since that isn’t happening this year my goal is to just make the best of it,” Adams said. 

This is the mindset that Porth has inserted into the minds of his swimmers. He has told them to focus on getting better and making the best of each day. The team continues to come together and make the most out of whatever season they have in store. 

“We have so many swimmers this year with a great deal of experience that exhibit leadership qualities.  That will help me greatly as a coach and will be a benefit for our younger swimmers as well,” Porth said. 

The senior leaders are key to the success of the team this year. They have experience dealing with adversity and will continue to lead the younger girls to success. Many of the seniors understand how important their role is as leaders and even captains of the team. 

“The younger girls of the team need to be able to see what it looks like to become a leader for the team,” Yost said. 

As a captain of the team, Yost demonstrates a good example of leadership and focus around the younger girls. She believes that the team needs the seniors to help the younger girls through meets and practices to ensure the success of the team when they leave next year. 

“I am so glad we are able to have a season and I wish the best for this year’s group.  They have been great to work with and have adjusted well to our changes,” Porth said. 

The girls swim team will compete again on Tuesday, Sept. 15, at Morris Community High School against the swim team of LaSalle-Peru.