Swim Team

Swim Team

By Laeni Pelzer

Swim team has been a fast-growing winter sport in Atlantic since the YMCA Flying Sharks swim team began. The team was started by Tammy Wickman in November of 2006. After that first year, Dean Junker took over as the head coach of the team in November of 2007. Dean has returned since head coach since then. Junker said, “We have a lot to be proud of from last year, we achieved many impressive things. We broke two state records, one of which people said would never be broken, and we won our first state title.” When asked what the goals for this season were freshman Damon Miller said, “To win my 200 at state and it would be nice to win the 100.” This will be Millers 6th year as part of the team.

Four girls from the High School have also been a part of the Lewis Central High School swim team for the past two years. Senior Sara King, Junior Lindsay Keltch, Junior Brie Steffens, and Sophomore Hanna King have traveled to Lewis Central for six practices a week throughout the fall season. When asked why they decided to do this Steffens said, “Tian Siggins told me you improve a lot at at Lewis Central. At the YMCA I wasn’t getting any faster, but at LC I dropped a lot of time.”  Head coach Bruce Schomburg said that he thinks the season went very well. “All four girls contributed to the success of our team as varsity swimmers.”

With an increasing interest in swim team over the past several years, our high school has had the idea about having our own swim team for the last couple years. Last year, the Atlantic School Board approved a movement for a swim team to be established during the 2014-2015 school year. This decision is dependent on having 10 Atlantic students participating during both the girl’s fall season and the boy’s winter season.  When asked, Athletic Director Matt Alexander thought that there was a pretty high interest level in swim team, but he believes it is higher with the elementary students and girls. He added that Atlantic could end up having a girls team but not a boys team. Alexander said, “I think it would be great if we could have both the boys and girls team, I don’t want it to take away from other sports but I would like it to give students not involved a chance to get involved. It is totally new to me.”  As of right now, there is no coach for the high school swim team.

Atlantic still has many things that still need to be taken into consideration with starting the swim team. One of these is figuring out when and where practices will be held. The school will need to figure out when the YMCA will allow the high school to utilize the pool for practices and meets. Additionally, the school will need to find out if the YMCA will let the team utilize their swimming equipment or if the school will have to purchase their own. Some more issues are scheduling swim meets, paying coaches, cooperative agreements with area schools, and competition. Alexander said, “Everything just has to fall into place.”