Blair swim and dive makes a splash!
The swim and dive season lasts two months and consists of early morning practices, five meets, metros, regionals, and states. Both the girls and the boys had successful seasons with broken records that helped to propel them forwards.
The girls team placed within the top five at all their major meets. "I think we had a great season, we had a super strong girls team who placed second in regionals (five points behind first place Sherwood) third in states and fifth in metros which is really awesome because it's all of the schools in the Washington metropolitan area,” said senior captain Lily Haeberle. At states Blair was able to beat one of their biggest competitors, Churchill, when they got third. Senior captain Madison Waechter broke her own record with a 4:51.28 in the 500 freestyle, an event she has dominated the past two years at metros, Junior Hannah Kannan set a new record for the 100 backstroke and the girls 200 medley relay team record was broken by five seconds. In addition, Holly Greenleaf, Brianna Forte, Sophia Liu, Alli Marney-Bell, and Sammie Grant all set individual records for Blair swim this season.
Junior diver Olivia Amitay started out doing both dive and swim in ninth grade for the Blair team, "I've been doing gymnastics competitively since about 7th grade and going into freshman year I knew I wanted to do diving. But I've also been swimming since about 5 and I also was drawn to swim and dive for the swim aspect,” said Amitay. Her freshman year she competed at metros, and got 4th in regionals and 12th at states, then as a sophomore she dove at metros, got 2nd at regionals and got 11th at states. After competing at states her sophomore year, Amitay was convinced to focus more on diving, "a couple coaches from outside diving clubs approached me and urged me to pursue diving outside of school. This caused me to focus on diving a lot more because it has become a sport I can potentially do in college,” said Amitay. She started doing club diving three times a week, and learned all the technique behind diving, "My junior year I came in a completely different diver than my sophomore and freshman year. This winter I've spent a lot of time on the boards, ending practices on Mondays and Wednesday's at 9:00 and being on the same board Tuesday and Thursday mornings only 8 hours later,” said Amitay. All her hard work paid off this year when she went to metros, got 2nd at regionals and 8th at states. "She's progressed so much, she went to states and metros last year but didn't place or make first cuts. This year she's done really well and will definitely continue to be a threat to other teams,” said Amitay's captain, Marianne Benyamin.
Freshman Max Casey-Bolanos' first year on Blair swim was a great experience, "It was really fun, I was able to interact with a lot of new people that I wouldn't normally interact with, and the coaches and the captains made it fun by trying to have lots of team building activities. It was cool being a freshman because I was able to learn stuff from upperclassmen. I enjoyed coming to meets and practices and getting to be with new and old friends,” said Casey-Bolanos. His best events this season were the 100 backstroke and the 500 freestyle with blistering times of 53.85 and 4:51.96. "He's a freshman and he scored the most points for the boys team, and he really came out strong this year,” said Adbaru. Although he was shy at first, Casey made many friends and is looking forward to next year. "At the beginning of the year I was shy because I didn't know a lot of people, but by the end of the season I was more confident around everyone,” said Casey-Bolanos.
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