Swim team prepares for district meet


Krista Fleming

Senior Amber Du practices for the district meet at practice on Jan. 20. Du will compete at the meet on Jan. 21.

The swim team will compete in a tri-meet at the LISD Eastside Aquatic Center on Jan. 21. 

“I’m quite confident in the events I was given, especially because they’re events I’ve swam before,” sophomore Savana Slaughter said. “I’m quite excited, [and] I think that I will do good. I’m swimming the 200 freestyle and the 100 backstroke.”

Most days from 6:15 to 8:45 a.m., the team works on dropping their times. 

“Swimming is such an interesting sport where you don’t get to compete once a week at the best of your ability, because you have to have those training cycles in there,” head swim coach Donzie Lilly said. “We only get to see [swimmers] at their prime once or twice a year between districts, regionals or state. We get them in some fast suits and put them in a good environment [and] a fast pool, and we see how fast they can go.” 

With the uncertainty of COVID-19, the team attended a more restricted version of the meet last year. 

“They actually did it a little different last year than they did it in the past,” Lilly said. “They separated the girls and the guys, which I thought was neat. I really enjoyed having a meet with just the girls and taking just the boys to their meet. I think they got to show more of their personality. Then, last year they only took top four, so it was increasingly hard to get to regionals. This year it’s back to top six, so it’s a little easier, but not by much.” 

At the split of the semester, Lilly took the top 17 boys and the top 17 girls and put them on the varsity team, placing everyone else in the junior varsity team. This will be the first time that Hebron will go to a swim meet with just 34 people.

“I think I’m looking forward to bonding with everyone a lot more because I kind of just stuck with my friends last year,” Slaughter said. “I don’t have a whole lot of friends going this year.” 

Lilly said there is uncertainty on whether some students would be allowed to compete due to health reasons.

“Anything could happen this year, especially with the rise of [COVID-19] cases,” Lilly said. “Kids are eligible to swim and not eligible to swim — you never know what’s going to happen. It’s really just going to depend on which team stays the safest out there and has the least number of [COVID-19] cases. If one of those powerhouse teams comes down with a big outbreak, you might be able to sneak into one of those top spots. I think this year, anything can happen.”