Originally published in The Weekly Packet, January 26, 2012
GSA Swim team improving speed, strength
Taylor Wardwell, who has qualified for four individual events for States, hustles during the Friday, January 20, meet at the Ellsworth YMCA.
by Jessica Brophy
The swim team is stronger, faster and breaking records, according to coach Jim Goodman.
Goodman, who also coaches the Ellsworth swim team, says the GSA swimmers have increased their yardage (distance swam) in practice, and that as a team, their times are coming down.
Taylor Wardwell has already qualified for States in the 50, 100 and 200 freestyle and 100 fly. To qualify, individual swimmers must meet or beat certain times. “You have to swim well to get to States and swim fast once you’re there,” said Goodman.
Goodman expects to take the boys relay and the girls relay to States. The boys relay has already set records for GSA since it’s the first year there have been more than one or two boys on the swim team. Though one boy has transferred from the school, four male swimmers remain for the relay.
The girls relay is also going strong and shaving time from the numbers. Team captain So Young Ihm has improved as well, said Goodman.
Currently, the swim team is an exhibition team, meaning they do not compete in dual meets for points during the regular swim season. Goodman expects that within a year or two—provided GSA’s swim team numbers remain at 10-15 as they have the past few years—the team will begin to have its own coach and compete for points against other schools.
“The team is learning the skills, they’re dedicated, and developing a good base,” said Goodman. “There’s only one graduating senior this year.”
There are a couple more swim meets at the Ellsworth YMCA: Friday, January 27 and February 3. The Penobscot Valley Conference Championships will take place at Husson, Friday and Saturday, February 10 and 11, and the state championships at Bowdoin, Monday and Tuesday, February 20 and 21.