Swimming happy tears as the girls’ team gears up for states


Photo courtesy of Morgan Palace ’21

The girls swim team after an epic win at their first meet!

Keely Messacar '21, Staff Writer

As the girls swim season comes to an end, the team is preparing for states and getting ready for their offseason with their new coach. According to girls and boys swimming and diving head coach John Fodell, the season has been going well so far as the girls were undefeated in their dual meet season.

“This year we had a new coach, and I think the team adapted really well, and it’s been a nice change,” swimmer Morgan Palace ’21 said. “Our practices and schedule are different and overall I think the team as a whole has changed for the better.”

The team was strong this year and they had many experienced freshmen come in, according to swimmer Adrienne Byarski ’21. The team won all 10 of their meets, and Byarski believes the daily two-and-a-half hour practices really paid off.

“Sometimes we take Sundays off,” Fodell said. “Train- you gotta train. Besides, Who doesn’t like being in the pool?”

States are taking place this weekend Nov. 16th through 18th, and according to Fodell, they have high expectations for the meets and hope to do better than the 14th place they placed last year at States.

“Not many people make it to states because it is such a hard level of competition,” Byarski said, “But for those how do make it and make the cuts that are required, we usually do very well.”

The girls swim team has been looking forward to states for a long time according to Fodell. Palace said mot many swimmers make it to states, so the team is grateful for their 10 swimmers who qualified for states. who qualified.

“We have been tapering our practices, which mean we’ve been going on fast intervals and we’ve been preparing for this meet for a long time, so I think our team is going to come out on the top this year,” Palace said.

According to Palace, she will be swimming 100 butterfly at states, which she has been practicing most of her swimming career. After years of training before joining South’s swim team, Palace has been swimming butterfly since she first started to swim with her friends when she was seven.  According to Palace, the friends that encouraged her to swim are still swimming with her and she has made many new friends on the team.

“Some of my friends were on a swim team when I was younger and swimming for the Grosse Pointe Gators kind of brought me into swimming for Grosse Pointe South because my friends encouraged me to swim on the team,” Palace said. “I think the swim team is a great opportunity to make new friends from different grades and I’ve met new people this year that I wouldn’t have known otherwise.”

During the offseason, many swimmers swim for Grosse Pointe Gators, according to Byarski. Fodell said it is important to keep in shape and keep practicing during the offseason. The team trains together from Sept. until states, therefore they should keep up training until the next season to keep their strong team.

“During the offseason,  I swim with Gators at Grosse Pointe South and I also play lacrosse for South in the Spring to keep in good shape,” Byarski said.

Looking back at the season, the team had many fun memories throughout the two and a half months. According to Palace, a team favorite event was going to the Mac Meet at the university and getting to swim against a bunch of other teams altogether.

“I think the Mac Meet as a whole added two of the girls going to the meet and how they handled themselves at Mac Meet,” Fodel said. “I think the team came together and really acted in such a positive manner, and I really enjoyed that.”

Meets were not the only way the team got to have fun, according to Byarski. The team bonded together throughout the season and welcomed the freshmen through bonding activities like sweating in a hot bus with broken air conditioning.

“This season the swim team has been the most fun it’s ever been,” Palace said. “We haven’t had too many away meets and mostly at home which is fun to swim at your home pool which you’re practicing in.  We’ve done a lot of team building activities this year like going to the apple orchard and team movie nights, pasta parties.”

Overall, the girls swim team is thriving with their new coach and are going into states with a positive attitude and ready to do well, according to Byarski. Palace said an undefeated season is something to be very proud of and it is exciting to see all their years of experience and hours of training pay off.

“This year we had a new coach, and I think that the team adapted really well, and it’s been a nice change, our practices, and schedule and different,” Palace said. “Overall I think that the team as a whole has changed for the better.