Swim and Dive makes a splash at state meet


Courtesy of Ava Easley

The swim and dive team poses for a picture before leaving for the state meet.

On Friday and Saturday, swim and dive competed at the state meet at the Lee & Joe Jamail Texas Swim Center at the University of Texas in Austin. After placing second as a team for both the girls and boys at the regional meet, 15 swimmers and one diver qualified to compete.
“State is always an adventure with the whole team,” junior Grant Hu said. “Since we brought such a large group, after-swim hotel activities were the highlight of the whole trip. It was filled with laughs and cheers that got the whole team pumped. The state crowd is like none other, and it brings so much excitement to the meet. It is a fantastic experience.”
To start off the meet, the girls 200 medley relay with seniors Camryn Sperling and Julia Stall, and sophomores Grace Hu and Ava Easley placed 11th with a time of 1:52.13. The same group placed 10th in the girls 200 free relay with a finish of 1:40.76.
“I felt a little nervous, but at the same time I was trying to remind myself to stay calm and keep a positive mentality,” Easley said. “My favorite moment of the meet was being with my team who are also some of my best friends. I also love being able to compete in relays with them and them cheering me on for individuals.”
The boys 200 free relay with juniors Grant Hu and Austin Stone, sophomore Chris Wang and senior Chris Pages broke the school record with a time of 1:28.57, placing 12th.
“I felt excited because I knew our team would do well,” Pages said. “My favorite moment of the meet was my last race ever where we broke the school record.”
At regionals, 4 athletes qualified for an individual event. Easley competed in the girls 100 back and was the B final champion, 9th overall with a 58.76. Stall competed in the girls 100 breaststroke and was 13th with a time of 1:08.71.
“I would say my goal for next year individually is to definitely get faster and place higher,” Easley said. “My long term goal before I graduate is to get on the podium. I think it was an amazing experience for the team to be able to go there and compete. It’s an amazing atmosphere and overall just a really fun trip.”
Grant Hu came home with two silver medals in the boys 200 freestyle and boys 500 freestyle. He broke both school records in his events with 1:28.57 in the 200 and 4:26.65 in the 500. Hu took a BeReal on the podium which landed him a picture in the Dallas Morning News.
“I was feeling excited for the meet,” Hu said. “There were a little nerves because I knew colleges were watching, but I was more pumped to show them what I could do. I broke the school record in both events previously held by the Jed Jones. Last year I had a bronze and silver so I’m glad I improved.”
For the second year in a row, sophomore Maria Faoro was crowned the diving state champion. In addition, she was named Female Athlete of the Meet.
“This year I felt more nervous and felt like all eyes were on me during the competition, Faoro said. “Going in trying to win back to back was already scary, but I just kinda focused on my diving and trying to stay consistent throughout the whole meet. I felt really good after I won, at that point I knew all my hard work and time spent preparing paid off.”
The team went home with medals, school records, and goals for next year.
“My favorite part of the meet was being able to celebrate with my team,” Faoro said. “They’ve been so supportive of me all throughout the season and cheer no matter what, so sharing a special moment in my life with them was my favorite part.”