Sophomore Andrew Le flies through the pool during the teams' sweep against Lincoln on Feb. 22. Photo by Kara Scherer
On the heels of their undefeated 2012 season, the Cardinals plan on maintaining their dominance in the pool this year. With a massive number of new swimmers and several returning veterans, they are optimistic that this season is going to be one of their best.
With a sigh of relief, last year the JV boys reclaimed their Academic Athletic Association title from rivals, the Lincoln Mustangs. The JV boys had not earned the title in both the 2010 and 2008 seasons, so this win is even more significant for the team. The JV boys title meant the Cardinals swept their competition, claiming top honors for both the varsity and JV teams. “Last season, we dedicated a lot of time to perfecting our strokes and dropping our times,” sophomore JV swimmer Aaron Chow said. “We are going to keep training smart this year, so we don’t lose the title again.”
Despite their supremacy in the pool, the team is always looking to improve. “We mainly focus on strength and speed training,” sophomore JV swimmer Greer Williams said. “We do a mix of sprint and endurance sets, so that we are ready for whatever comes at us over the duration of the season.”
This year coach Jonathan Riley plans to continue with his emphasis on sprints and stroke technique and intense threshold sets, where swimmers swim fast sets with very little rest. “If you don’t have your technique perfected, there is no way that you can improve,” sophomore JV swimmer Lori Zadoorian said. “Once you have the technique down, you can begin to see improvements in your time and performance.”
As the Cardinals built a strong reputation, over a score of new swimmers joined for the season, and the 20 new teammates were welcomed, according to Riley. “This was one of the biggest turn outs that we’ve ever had as a team, that I can remember,” varsity junior swimmer Jessica Weiss said.
New swimmers this year will help boost the JV teams to about 30 swimmers per team, which is the largest in the AAA. The team’s winning record was a prime reason for the large amount of interest. “I joined the team this year because I wanted to be a part of a successful part of Lowell Athletics,” Williams said. “As new JV swimmers, we especially focus on form before we move on to work to drop our times.”
With high hopes for the upcoming season, the Cardinals are more excited than ever to see their training pay off for their first meet. “Our competitors are a year older and a year better, but we have the ability to keep our place on the podium if we give it our all in practice and keep a positive attitude in the pool,” senior varsity swimmer Leslie Fung said.
Come cheer for the Cardinals as they race against the Galileo Lions March 8 at Galileo Pool.