New Year, New Sport

Hasan Daniels , Staff Writer

January 15th marked a new day in Da Vinci’s sports history; the school held its first ever swim team tryouts.

With the addition of the new pool, which had its grand opening two weeks prior to the first day of swim tryouts, a co-ed swim team was added to the list of spring sports offered by the school. Other spring sports include boys volleyball, co-ed track and field, boys baseball, girls softball, and archery are offered at Da Vinci.

“I think it’s an amazing feeling to be a part of the first ever swim team,” said freshman and varsity swimmer Jaylin Henderson. “One, because I’m a freshman and two because I’ve always dreamed of this type of moment. I’ve waited to be in high school, I’ve waited to be on a high school sports team, and to be the first for the school is a pretty cool achievement for me.”

The swim team has student-athletes from all different backgrounds. Some students have been swimming since they were young, making swimming their primary sport. Some took on swimming competitively and then took a break to play another sport, and some have never swam competitively, only recreationally with friends.

“I used to play water polo for about two years as a goalie so I didn’t swim a lot but I tread water a lot. I also took lessons as a kid and that is where I learned the different strokes so I have a little bit of experience,” said senior Trevor Ward.

Despite the swim team only being together and practicing for a week now, it is safe to say they are already a close group of competitive individuals. They are constantly racing in practice in order to bring out the competitive side in everybody. The team has lanes in which swimmers are divided into each of these lanes based on how fast of a swimmer they are.

“We are competitive but really not with each other,” said sophomore Lauren Larios. “It’s more like practice; we help each other to get better. It’s not really like competing with different people and you don’t have to worry about them putting you down. If you are not as fast as them or if they are better at a specific technique we still look to support each other.”

In any sport, athletes set both personal and team goals in hopes of having a successful season. Some members of the swim team look to lower their individual swim times, some look to become better leaders, and some look to maintain a good GPA while attending practice every day after school from 4 to 6 p.m.

“This season I think my biggest goal is to not make CIF finals but try to go to CIF,” said freshman Jaylin Henderson. “If it’s not CIF because that is a tough place to be, I just want to drop my times as much as possible. I’ve had a time that I haven’t broken for almost two years and I feel like this is the year I can finally do it.”

With the new Olympic-sized swim pool, the introduction of the swim team as a new spring sport, and the high attendance of people who tried out, it wouldn’t be a surprise if swimming became a popular sport at Da Vinci.

“I think that if Da Vinci advertises the sport people would be swimming more,” said Ward. “I think it has the potential to be a popular sport at Da Vinci if they put their best foot forward.”