Country Day Swimmers: Finish the Season Strong!


Nathan Albrinck

By Adam Peng ’17, Sports Editor

The winter sports season will soon come to an end for Cincinnati Country Day School’s swimming team. With new coach Jana Westhoven and other roster changes, the team’s performance this season has been the focus of many people’s attention.

Although facing difficulties such as fighting against injuries, accommodating new team members, and trying to build a team bond, they finished their duel meetings strongly, using outstanding individual and team efforts to win three out of five. I interviewed some of the swimmers on the team to talk about their experience over the season.

Many of them mentioned the team-bonding that Coach Westhoven brought to the team as a new coach this year. “We did a lot of team bonding after practice. Sometimes it is an organized meal for all the team members. Her training was not as aggressive as last year’s coach, a club coach, but she really did a good job bonding the team together.” Taylor Boggs ’16 said. Other swimmers made similar comments as well. Holly Jacobs ’17 added, “Our team continued to improve under her leadership and cheered for each other during the events.” Along with Jacobs, Sophie Hudson ’17 illustrated the important role that their coach played, adding, “She is good with people, and did a lot with our team-bonding.”

When talking about their own performances, swimmers always have different words to say. Boggs described her experience getting used to the rigor of the season. “As a swimmer, I am not always the best, but with the support and cheering from my teammates, I know they want me to have my best time. We are a small team in the division and swimming is different from other sports. There was a big lag when the season starts, but once we started training, the time drops quickly.” Boys’ Team Captain, Malcolm Doepke ’16, show his passion for improving the team. “My performance during the season was definitely not where I wanted it to be. I always felt tired at meets due to club team practices but did my best to help win the meets for the boys. Overall, I think the team is in a great standing right now going into the championship stretch, and I think we’ll be able to get as far as state.”

Hudson talked about her experiences with injury over the season and girls’ practice together with the boys. She said, “Our relay team worked well together, a big part was our strong system. I have some really good friends in the boys’ team. Training with boys really pushes girls to work harder, as boys are generally faster, but I really tried to catch up with them at the same level. I had a back injury at the start of the season, and that really affected my performance on butterfly, yet I was back to the top time soon after the injury. I am always in the same relay team with Holly, I couldn’t really swim as fast as her at first, but I worked extremely hard because I don’t want to let down my teammates.”

Swimmers also have expectations for next year. “I have been on this team for three years. The seniors did a good job as team leaders, and hopefully we can take on the role next year. Just keep working and finish this season strong,” said Jacobs. As a senior, Taylor Boggs has mixed feelings in her last season. “Swimming is difficult as we are not always at our personal best, but it pays off over time. It is sort of bittersweet since this is my last high school season in the pool.” When ask about her advice to new team members next year, she said, “Don’t be intimidated by our practice. We have a lot of practices, but just try your best to come to them and have fun.”

Talking about their teammates and coaches, John Pettengill ’18 said, “They have done a really good job over the season, I would just say, keep swimming, because it is fun.” Captain Doepke said, “I would like to thank all my teammates and coaches for giving me support through my last season with them, and know that the best is still ahead.”

Swimming team’s most important events are coming up soon so let’s hope their wishes can come true and they finish the season strong!