Unbeknownst to many students at Blind Brook High School is the opportunity to swim on the Varsity Swim Team. For the first time in many years Blind Brook had a female student, sophomore Julia Sunshine, swim on the combined Varsity Swim Team with Rye Neck High School and Rye High School in the fall season. This winter season a greater number of male students from Blind Brook High School jump back into the pool to swim at the varsity level.
Like the girls team, Blind Brook is unable to field a boy’s team entirely on their own. They are merged with Rye and Rye Neck and the captains of the team are Junior Ryan Bedell, Senior Baptist Saliba from Rye Brook and Thomas Mackey and Cavs Harshburger from Rye. The team places high value on hard work and strive for excellence when in the pool. Head Coach Lara Vivolo pushes the swimmers to do their best at practice and during meets.
Almost halfway through the season with a record of 1-3, the Trojan’s swim team is looking to turn their luck around. With six meets left to go the Trojans are confident that with enough practice and hard work the tea, will finish the season victorious. Although they have many strong individual swimmers the team must come together to get the positive outcomes they so desire. “The team encourages each other a lot and we are all very competitive, so when it comes to practice I know I’ll race against a couple of kids I’ll see them swimming fast and it makes me want to swim faster and also we cheer each other on a lot at meets and things and we know it’s really important for other people we are really encouraging,” says Saliba.
One of the strongest swimmers on the team is captain Bedell. “I do the 500 yard freestyle and I fill in whatever else is needed,” said Bedell. “We had a tough start to the season but I believe that we can win some meets later. My best event is the 500 and my best time is a 452. My goals for the season are to practice hard, get faster every day, and take one event at a time, and just drop a lot of time in general.” Caption Baptist Saliba is also a key contributor from Blind Brook to the Varsity Swim Team. Saliba said, “Most of the time I’ll swim short distance so I’ll do the 50 yards freestyle, 100 yard freestyle or I’ll do the 200 sometimes. Most people take part in the relays so I’ll do the 400 yard relay or the 200 yard relay.”
Swimming on the varsity swim team is demanding and requires a lot of time and effort from the athletes. “We train everyday, warm-ups are very important and we have to eat right,” said junior Socrates Espinal. Espinal swims the 50 free and the 100 free during meets since he has first joined the team last year. Most swimmers take part in two relays. You get to see a lot of heart when you are at a swim meet, even though not everyone watches each and every event once you get on the block everyone has there own little way of getting in the zone and it’s very cool to watch,” said Saliba, who’s best personal time is 0.03 seconds off the sectional cuts. His fastest time for the 100 is .205 seconds.
As the season starts to wind down the swimmers must push themselves harder than ever to achieve their personal best times and to win meets in order to advance into the postseason. Although a small team for Blind Brook, our athletes are working to prove themselves in the pool.