By Pat Mariboe
The Shoremen and Shorewomen both ended their regular season competitions on a high note with wins against McDaniel. The hard work doesn’t stop as the team will now start preparing for the Centennial Conference Championships in less than two weeks.
Assistant Coach Emily Rollo, who was appointed to the position this past summer, knows what the team has to do these next few weeks to help achieve playoff glory.
“We are heading into the last two weeks of the season before the Centennial Conference Championships and we are preparing physically and mentally,” she said. “The last two weeks of the season, we start to rest their bodies, so practices become shorter and we focus more on racing. We practice a lot of good technique and race strategies and prepare their bodies to swim fast.”
Rollo said the team has also been focusing on getting enough sleep, eating well and staying healthy so that they are in the best shape to compete in two weeks.
“We are working on keeping a positive and encouraging mentality among the team. Coach Matt Harris and I are preparing them in every way so that they are positioned to swim at their absolute best,” she said.
The transition to collegiate swimming hasn’t proved to be a tough task for freshman standout Leo Johnson, who, after a successful first year with the program, is looking forward to the challenges that lay ahead.
“The team is going into the Championships weekend with a positive attitude and determination,” Johnson said. “Everyone has worked hard this season and is preparing to leave it all in the pool. We are looking to improve from last year and leave a positive mark on our season final.”
Senior captain Kevin Mackenzie echoed similar thoughts, as he prepares for this final, and hopefully best, Championship swim.
“We set great goals for ourselves in the beginning of the year,” Mackenzie said. “Now it’s great to watch us finally get a chance to get them.”
In last season’s Championships, the Shoremen finished fifth out of seven teams while the Shorewomen finished fourth out of eight teams.
Rollo knows there’s a hard road ahead, but believes both teams have what it takes to improve on last season’s results.
“Coach Harris and I believe that both teams are situated to do very well at the Conference Championships,” Rollo said. “The men and women have had a great duel meet season this year. Some Conference competitions were very close and to compete among the best in the Conference has prepared us well going into Champs.
Both teams had close wins vs. Frankin & Marshall, a tough competetor for WC. These wins “give our swimmers confidence” going into the Championships.
“We are looking to have as many people score in the top 16 and have lifetime best swims,” she said.