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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Swim team to travel to Macalester, Florida

The swim team is heading to Macalester in Minneapolis, Minn for the Great Scot Invitational this weekend for the final meet of the semester and the most competitive meet of their season so far.

The team traditionally schedules a meet on this weekend as a culmination of the fall season. Although the team previously visited larger schools, such as the University of Minnesota and the University of Nebraska-Omaha for this meet in the past, budget cuts forced the team to scale down where they team went to swim. Most of the team is happy about the change, however.

“The meet is in a conference format,” said senior women’s Co-Captain Amy Hadow ’10. “Conferences are usually done in three days and this meet is being done in a day and a half, so we’ll get to swim a lot more than we typically would. We can stay one night and have a really good experience and then get back here the next day.”

The meet is broken into three sessions and is not scored so although the team is gaining valuable experience in competing three times in the weekend, it allows the swimmers and divers to focus solely on their events.

“This meet is a non-scoring invitational, which means that everyone swims and dives to the best of their ability, but there’s no final team score,” said Head Coach Erin Hurley. “What that provides us with is an opportunity to get people to swim different events without having to worry about the outcome of the meet, which is good in these few weeks before finals.”

This is not to say that the Macalester meet is unimportant, however. By going to Macalester, the team swims against schools that are more similar Grinnell in size, as opposed to larger universities. It also provides good practice for the conference meet in February, since many of the schools present this weekend are in Grinnell’s conference.

“We made seasonal goals and are going to try and meet them this weekend,” said Jenny Peek ’13. “We’ve been talking about how all the training we’ve been doing is going to start showing now. We’re still going really hard and not cutting back at all before Macalester.”

A key component of the team’s training, both for Conference Championships and for the season as a whole comes with their trip to Naples, Florida over Winter Break. This annual trip lasts 10 days and combines twice-daily practices with team bonding and events in the surrounding community, including an alumni event.

The team is taking 54 swimmers and divers in total this year.

“I’m really flattered to be able to go as a first year,” Peek said. “I’m really looking forward not only to getting in better shape for second semester but also for becoming closer with the team. It’s a great opportunity.”

Hadow has gone to Florida the past three years and will be going again this year, and is still looking forward to the trip.

“A lot of people talk about Winter Break getting kind of long at the end, so it’s nice to come back early and go somewhere warm,” she said.

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