Team Spotlight: Girls’ & Boys’ Swim & Dive

Ella Fessler ’25 in Sports | February 17, 2023

Last week, the Lawrenceville Varsity and Junior Varsity Swimming teams hosted the annual New Jersey Independent Schools Athletic Association Prep A Division Swimming Championship. Over the course of two days, the boys competed on Tuesday, February 7, and the girls on Wednesday, February 8. New Jersey schools such as Pingry, Hun, and Peddie participated in this meet. The boys' team excitedly came out on top to reclaim their first-place title, displaying their hard work, continuous dedication, and devotion to swimming. The girls, up against extremely tough competition, placed fourth overall. 
The boys and girls swim together in the new Tsai pool for two hours, six days a week. By thoroughly building an athletic environment with countless supportive coaches, the boys and girls respectively form a tight-knit team. Campbell Abbott ’25 speaks very highly of the bonds she has made over the past two years. When asked about her relationship with her teammates, she said,  “Everyone cheers each other on in meets. No matter how close you are, we are all part of one team and want the best for each other. Though swimming is an individual sport, the relationships between teammates are irreplaceable.” Ava Jahn ’24 gives credit to her coaches for her second-place finish in the girl’s 100-yard backstroke. As a junior team captain, she is a leader along with V Formers Max Blecher, Maddy Laws, Jack Patel, Alex Xia, and Adeline Zhou.. The last home meet of the swim season was held at the New Jersey State level, so team members went all out while preparing. To raise team spirit and prepare for the big meet, boys and girls had the opportunity to bleach their hair to get psyched for their upcoming events. Girls made supportive t-shirts with puns of male team members’ names, and vice-versa. 
With one more week left in the season, many swimmers are currently preparing for their last championship meet: Easterns. Easterns, unlike states, is a qualifying meet, where swimmers must be below a specific time to be eligible to compete. Many swimmers made the time standards at states. David Laws P’23, one of three swim coaches along with Stephanie Harrison and Noelle Niu, said, “Easterns gives our best swimmers a chance to swim against some of the best high school swimmers in the country.” Easterns lasts for a total of three days and two nights. Leaving on Thursday, February 16, qualified swimmers will make their way to the Franklin and Marshall College pool to have a team dinner and a warm-up to prepare for the morning’s events. With morning competitions held as early as 6:30 AM, swimmers will demonstrate their progress and capabilities in the pool. Though the States meet had competition, Easterns hosts more than double the number of teams—therefore, it is considered to be the hardest meet of the season. Congratulations to the Big Red Girls and Boys Varsity and Junior Varsity Swim teams; good luck at Easterns!