By Carmen Blum (Sports) –
After a turbulent season of injuries, victories, and personal bests, this year has turned out to one of serious growth in the Lincoln High Swim and Dive team, as head swim Coach Richard Conradt can attest.
“This season, I think that the team has really learned about how tough they are and how strong they really can be, as well as how much potential they have to improve more in the coming years.”
It is one thing to know how strong one can be and an entirely other to show it, and this year the swim and dive team showed it to the fullest extent. Two of the team’s senior divers, Allison Hinrichs and Payton Prall, dealt with injuries and still dove at state. Prall broke her hand at conferences and astonishingly came in fourth at state. Hinrichs, who dealt with spinal problems at the beginning of the season, came in 17th. The swimmers also had success at state with senior Garrett Brockman coming in 14th in the Boys 100 Fly, and although all the girls relays improved they unfortunately did not place.
Despite the success at state, an athlete’s work is never done, and there are still multiple things that the team hopes to improve on next year.
“One thing that we need to work on is practicing like we want to compete, really focusing on the dives,” said Senior diver Allison Hinrichs “Especially in diving, which is largely a mental sport, during meets you really have to stay out of your own way. You can’t be over thinking it too much, otherwise you’ll psych yourself out, and preparing for that is something you can never do too much of.”
Also in the next season, Dive coach Reynaldo Castro wants to focus on conditioning during the off season. “If a diver’s conditioning is poor, then they are always trying to play catch up and that can really affect your confidence because you don’t perform at the level you expect to perform at.” The team also has several things they want to improve on over on swimming’s side of the pool. “We should do more bonding activities towards the beginning of the season, because we only really did them at the end of the season,” said Freshman swimmer Nella Maynard, “Also swimming in the same lane as people who challenge you really helps with times, and we should continue with that next year.”
With the 96th season of Swim and Dive at LHS now officially over, it is easy to see the results of the team’s’ hard work and persistence. Although this year will see the graduation of four of their teammates, I can guarantee that the team will continue to show the same hard work in the seasons to come.