A historic season

Davis Corman, News Editor

From COVID-19 pandemic restrictions to everlasting bus ride memories, all were entailed in this year’s Bellefonte swimming season. The season ended on a historic mark.

At the beginning of the season, many of the swimmers were initially excited to simply be able to compete. Due to the pandemic, many individuals on the swim team were limited in their ability to swim. 

Senior Natasha Hoffman explained, “Because of the pandemic, it was really hard to find a place to swim. We ended up having to practice at the Bellefonte YMCA. The pool is only 23 1/2 yards and three lanes. Most pools are at least 25 yards and six lanes.”

She went on to mention, “We also were only able to practice for 1 hour and 30 minutes five days a week which is a lot less than we practiced in past years.”

Despite these setbacks, it did not stop the Bellefonte swim team from having ambitious goals. It was clear from the beginning that there was one objective in the team’s mind: District Championship. A feat that has not been accomplished since 2013. 

Throughout the season leading up to the district championships, Bellefonte would perform well against its opponents. The girl’s team finished with a winning 7-3 record, losing close matches to Clearfield, Dubois, and State College. Similarly, the boy’s team ended with a 5-3-1 record losing to the same teams as the girls. 

During the swimming season, the team shared memorable experiences, most notably in beating their rivals: Tyrone. 

Natasha exclaimed, “The accomplishment I’m most proud of is beating Tyrone. Both the boys and girls won against Tyrone this year, and it’s been a long time since either team has beaten them.”

Now, these memories also occurred outside the pool deck. When looking back on the year, bus rides and team bonding experiences were some of the favorite experiences made throughout the season. Senior Nathan Taylor expressed, “My favorite moment outside of the pool was getting to know all of the new freshman on the bus rides. We had  a lot of new kids join the team this year and it was great to get to know them all.”

All of this, from hours of practice to bonding experiences, was building up towards the team’s main goal of a district championship. On March 6, their grit and determination would be put to the test at the annual district championship meet held in Hollidaysburg Area High School. The girls would go out and dominate the competition, breaking the school’s 200 freestyle relay record and placing first, bringing home the district title. Moreover, the boys would also end the meet fairing well against their competition, placing fourth as a team and having an individual champion: Harry Horner. 

As the season comes to a close, the team could not be prouder of what they have accomplished. Whether it involves their lasting memories made or the historic feat accomplished by the girl’s team, all make for an unforgettable season. 

Nathan stated, “The current team is full of talented and hard working swimmers who are going to accomplish so much in the next few years and I’m proud that I was a part of it this season.”