Swim team strokes toward success


Photo by Faith Owan

Sophomore Deven Aruda competes in the 100-yd backstroke at the MIL Meet held at Kamehameha Maui on Saturday, January 9.

The swim team pushed to improve at the third Maui Interscholastic League meet of the season held at the Piʻilani Aquatic Center on Saturday, Jan. 9.

The girls team placed second overall on both Friday and Saturday, and the boys team tied for fourth on Friday and placed third on Saturday.

“I think overall today went really well,” Coach Amanda Jimenez said. “I saw some things that we need to work on, but we’re about halfway through the season, and we have time to correct those things and build upon what we’ve learned so far.”

Coach Jimenez said that about half the team is new to swimming and have learned the four swim strokes: breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly, and freestyle. This means that they can now be entered into any of the events.

“I’m really excited about all the progress they’ve made,” she said.

One of those new swimmers is Lily Gavagan, a sophomore who also does long distance running as a member of the cross country team. She joined the team this year because swimming is a “great way to strengthen other muscles that are needed for running too.”

Other than the athletic benefits, Gavagan appreciates her teammates, too.

“I just love all the teammates that are here,” she said. “They’re just really encouraging, and they’re all awesome, and they’re all competitive too.”

Hunter Worth is another new sophomore who was welcomed by the team.

“I think the swim team is one of the most encouraging teams out there at our school,” Worth said.

He said that their support helped him to adapt to the sport more easily, and he thought the team’s positivity helped those in the meet who were competing in difficult events.

So far, the girls 200-yard medley relay and 200-yard free relay team have qualified for the state meet, and Coach Jimenez hopes to get the 400-yard medley relay to a state-qualifying time, too. The members of these relay teams are Lia Ikeda, Quinn Shiraishi, Riann Fujihara, and Nikki McGuire. See the relay results here.

Nikki McGuire is a junior who has been on the Kamehameha Maui swim team since her freshman year. She said that even though she thinks the meet could have gone better, she believes the Warriors tried their best. She said their key to improvement is to rest and to train harder.

Coach Jimenez said that the Kamehameha Maui swim team has been great overall.

“They’re putting in their best effort and I’m excited to see what happens next,” she said.