[dropcap]W[/dropcap]ith two months until the state meet, the RBHS girls’ swim and dive team started its season Dec. 2 at the Marquette Swimming and Diving Relays.
Because it was a relay meet, there were no individual placements. Instead, all of the scores were combined. On the diving side, senior Caroline Stevens, junior Katie Bagley and freshman Gracie-Anne Fraunfelder collectively took 6th with 464.85 points. The Bruins took 10th with a score of 74.
As the meet, Bagley believes it can be intimidating because it has been a year since anyone has competed.
“[It’s] sometimes a little hard to get back into the groove, along with [the fact] that we have only had a few weeks of practice,” Bagley said. “Most of us still haven’t been able to perfect our dives yet.”
Like Bagley, Stevens understands the difficulty of having to come back every year without having done any diving or swimming since the previous state meet. For athletes like Stevens, knowing her full capability of doing dives she has already done in the past gives her confidence to perform better than she did in previous years.[quote]“I was really encouraged by how I did so I’m excited to see how I can progress,” Stevens said. “As a team we’ve got a ton of work to do but we all got all of our dives off the board and that’s what matters for the first meet.”[/quote]
In head coach Taylor Birsa’s perspective, the swimmers have areas to improve on, such as their turns and starts.
“[My assistant coach and I] both felt [the swimmers] needed more fine tuning to help ensure we are ready when it comes to swimming in our races,” Birsa said. “Yardage will be increasing to help build more of an aerobic base which is another area that we aren’t where we need to be right now.”
As for Bagley, she said she will be working on improving her height. If she can learn to jump higher, she will be able to increase the difficulty of her dives by adding more flips and twists, ultimately giving her a higher score, Bagley said.
“Coming out of this meet I will have more confidence for the future ones knowing that I have already gotten the first meet out of the way,” Bagley said. “It’s also sometimes hard to adjust to the other pools so the more [the] meets, the more I can get used to it and the different boards.”
The Lady Bruins will compete againswws Dec. 14 in the Sedalia v. Marshall Invite. But with the eight meets the athletes still have left, Birsa said the Marquette Relays was a good first meet to go to.
“We had half of our team gone for a club swim meet, but that meant more spots for girls who do not swim-year round to swim more races they might not be able to swim that much this season, “ Birsa said. “They got to swim events that might have made them uncomfortable, which they handled very well. We were able to get out first meet jitters out of the way and see where we are in the season based on the first couple weeks of practice.”
Are you part of the RBHS swim and dive team? Let us know in the comments below.