The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

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The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

The Rubicon

The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

The Rubicon

Trojan swim and dive falls just short to Hastings squad

It was like summer in the Hastings Middle School Pool, as heat and moisture radiated through the air. The extremely humid, tall room held a 25-yard pool, where the Highland Park and SPA Trojan boys swim and dive team faced off against the Hastings Raiders. This meet exhibited support and sportsmanship, both from athletes and the packed audience. After two hours of spirited competition, the Trojans barely lost to the Raiders, with a score of 90-93.

Though swimming is mostly focused on times, points are incorporated to increase competitiveness and teamwork at meets, especially smaller ones like this. For relays and individual events alike, top-placing teams or athletes earn the highest amount of points and the points decrease for subsequent places. Some lower rankings garner no points at all. That’s why every event and every athlete is crucial.

Sophomore Ben Lee, a new student at SPA this year and an up-and-coming swimmer on the Trojans said, “I liked how competitive today was and usually these meets aren’t as close but the closer they are, the more fun and more exciting they are.”

An hour before the meet began, swimmers and divers arrived from their schools and warmed up in the pool. Athletes piled up in each of the six narrow lanes, creating a chaotic scene of splashing water, while coaches stood on either side, watching intently. Captain Rishi Bhargava, who pulled out of the meet, as well as managers Henry Choi and Lucy Shaffer were also present to cheer on their Trojan teammates.

The first event of the evening was the 200 Medley Relay, where a total of 14 points were on the line. In this event, four athletes on every relay team swam 50 yards of one of the four different strokes, each swimming a different one than the others. It set the tone of the meet as athletes gave it their all in the water and the audience screamed and chanted.

After the relay, a few individual events occurred and then it was time for diving. Though there were no Spartan divers, everyone enjoyed watching the three athletes leap and flip into the water. Three judges sat on the side holding up scores, while trying their best to keep a straight face even after the occasional belly or back-flop.

Then, swimmers were right back in the pool to finish off the meet.

As the second half commenced, a few standouts on the Trojans appeared. One of them was Lee. Swimming four events across the span of two hours, he earned a large chunk of the Trojans’ points and a second place in the 100 breaststroke. “I’m just trying to get better every day, get faster, and improve my technique,” Lee said.

I liked how competitive today was and usually these meets aren’t as close but the closer they are, the more fun and more exciting they are.

— Ben Lee

Freshman Sam Galarneault also swam four events and was a positive and encouraging personality at the pool. He held his own in the 200 medley, 50 free, 100 butterfly and 200 free relay, even earning two personal records. Not only that, Galarneault also spent any time he wasn’t swimming to cheer on and assist his teammates in their events. While others rested, he was at the end of the pool counting laps for the longer events. “I love the team. The friends and relationships you make on the team are super, super rewarding,” Galarneault said.

By the final event, the Trojans had developed a small lead over the Raiders, seemingly ready to take the victory. But, the Raiders had strong teams for the 400 free relay. In dramatic fashion, the Raiders placed first and second, taking the victory by just three points, much to the excitement of the home crowd. “It’s a little sad that we lost by so little but two of our best swimmers were out. But it was a good meet and a good day,” said Galarneault.

The Trojans will soon take on the St. Paul Johnson Governors at Humboldt High School on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

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About the Contributor
Thomas Chen
Thomas Chen, Sports Editor
Hi, my name is Thomas Chen (he/him). I work as the Sports Editor for RubicOnline. This is my second year on staff. At school, I’m the Upper School Council treasurer and I'm also involved in the Asian Student Alliance. I love to figure skate and watch reality TV. I can be reached at [email protected].

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