Athens Drive’s Swim Team competes at the Regional Championships

Daniela Delgado, Copy Editor

The Athens Drive Swim Team’s season is coming to an end. Friday, Feb. 2, the team competed in their second to last meet of the season, the 4A East NCHSAA Regional Championships, which took place at the Triangle Aquatic Center. The team took 18 of their swimmers to compete against 21 other high schools in the East region.

Ready and anxious to start racing, all swimmers jumped into the pool for meet warmups at 3:15 p.m. While there were multiple other high school teams competing at Regionals, the atmosphere was full of competitive spirit and good sportsmanship.

“I came to support my teammates at the meet and it not only creates a great and lively environment but also brings us closer together,” said swimmer Anna-Lisa Keller, senior.

As the meet took off, swimmers from every team lined the edge of the pool as they cheered on their teammates to finish fast. Support came from some of our own student body who came to encourage the Jags in the stands. The swim season has allowed our Athens Drive swimmers to build relationships and bonds that have joined them as a team through all the practices and meets they have been through.

“Throughout my four years on the swim team, I have made great friends and have enjoyed cheering on all my teammates. I am proud of how much we have all accomplished as a team,” said swimmer Carly Haugh, senior.

During the meet, the Athens Drive team had three individual first place wins. Zach Brown’s 200 IM and 100 Fly swims and David Wahlen’s 100 Backstroke. They will be seated very highly at the States swim meet. In addition to them, Daniel Baldwin, Drew Hollett, Ryan Silver, Chris Silver, Robert Bennett and Austen Davis will also be headed to compete at States for individual and relay events. Coach Barry, who won the Coach of the Year award at the conference meet for the second year in a row, mentions how proud he is of the progress the team has made throughout the season.

 Photo by NewsObserver.com
Zach Brown swimming in the Mens 200 IM event.

“All their hard work was shown during their meet, and I am proud of the outcomes,” said Barry.

Coming to the end of the meet, the Athens Drive Men’s team placed third out of 22 teams with a total of 217 points, coming in just behind the Millbrook High School’s Men’s team with 230 points and the Cardinal Gibbons High School’s Men’s team with 242 points. As for the women’s rankings, the Athens Drive Women’s team placed 13 out of the 22 teams with a total of 44 points.

Excitement is held among the team as the swimmers who are headed to States continue to practice and train for their final meet of the season with hopes for high rankings.

“Working with everyone during practice has paid off with how well we have done this season. We’ve had some ups and downs but overall the Regionals meet had impressive swims. Now I am excited to see how States turn out,” said Barry.