Pride Goes Swimming

Will Countie prepares for the start of the race. Photo courtesy of Alexa Garbarino.

With their alarm clocks blaring as early as 4:15 in the morning, the swim team prepares for another early morning practice. The team meets at Optimist Park for their 5:30 a.m. practice where they swim around 2 miles. After an hour of pool time, a hot shower, and some fresh clothes the team heads to school.

“I’m definitely tired in class, but I’m aware of the commitment I’ve made to the sport and it helps me rationalize it when im tired in class or tired at home,” said Jacob Phillips, junior.

Phillips says the team looks to do big things in their 2015-16 season. The team is lead by senior captains Will Countie and Clay Boneham who both will play key roles in the team’s success.

“They are very fast, and since they are seniors, this will be their best chance to place very highly in the CAP-8, regionals and states,” said Phillips.

Countie currently holds the team record for 100 backstroke and the medley relay. He has also committed to swim at the University of South Carolina next year. Countie said his daily routine consists of an early morning practice, school, after school practice, a trip to the gym for weightlifting, and homework around 8 p.m.

“It is a lot of work but it does pay off. It’s lead to me reaching amazing goals in the sport especially getting my Olympic trials cut,” said Countie.

A typical meet consists of 11 events including the freestyle, backstroke, breastroke, and butterfly. In a head-to-head match up, a team can be awarded a maximum of 14 points on each of the three relay races, and a maximum of 16 points for each of the eight individual events. The first team with more than 85 points wins the meet.

The team placed third in the CAP-8 and hope to build toward their goal: win the league.

“As a whole, this probably is our team’s strongest year,” said Phillips.

The men started off the season Thursday, November 19 and claimed second place in the meet. Their next meet will take place Tuesday December 1; they will compete against Enloe, Sanderson, and Panther Creek.

Throughout the month of November, the CAP-8 all-conference teams were announced. This year, Leesville had a tremendous number of honorees–27 total to be exact spanning across six teams. Tennis and cheerleading are amongst the sports that don’t have all-conference honors. Congratulations to the 2015-16 fall sports CAP-8 all-conference honorees. Sports don’t hand out all-conference honors.


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