Each year, Louisa Gators swim team coach Debra Bickley gathers her swimmers together and comes up with a number of time improvements she expects them to achieve.
Annually, the bar is set extremely high. This year’s bar was set at 500. At the Gator’s last home swim meet on Friday, July 12, that goal became much more attainable.
During their last home meet of the season, with teams from Lake Monticello and Gordonsville, Gator swimmers set 98 individual time improvements, raising their season total to 322. To set a time improvement, a swimmer must eclipse their previous best time in an event, and the line between breaking a record and falling just short can be a matter of a second.
“We set our goal for 500,” swim meet director Tina Schwiekart said. “We are hoping to reach that goal and then some!”
More than 500 people attended the last meet of the year, and most of the parents of the 101 swimmers on the team served active roles as volunteers for the event.
“When you sign on as a swimmer, it’s essentially a requirement as part of the team that each family participate at each meet,” Schweikart said. “It takes 45 workers for each meet. We have to have 18 timers, we have to have people who work concessions and we have to have people who work the computers to check people’s times. Our parents are great about stepping up and helping.”
To read the entire story, see the July 18 edition of The Central Virginian.