Swim and Dive teams numbers hit all-time high

Anika Nyp, Blue M Editor-in-Chief

As the winter sports season starts and signup sheets are posted, the Manhattan High Boys Swim and Dive team was soon overflowing with signatures. The team’s popularity has escalated over the years and now has reached a new record from last year’s rosters.  

“Well, my biggest plan is to make sure with a large number of kids that I have signed up that everyone … is working hard [in] developing their technique,” head coach Alex Brown said, “and hopefully just really enjoying the sport of swimming and the team atmosphere that we develop.”

The team last year had around 50 swimmers, which was the biggest number the swim and dive team has had but this year more than 60 have signed up, including many returners from last year. 

“Some of our Varsity returners [are junior] Chris Bedros, [senior] Chris Chae, [sophomore] Zeke Kohl for diving, [senior] Peyton Mills, [senior] Xander Say, [junior] Igor Shasha and [senior] Brandon Spielman,” Brown said.

Most of those signed up have actually turned out to be upperclassmen by most of the boys introducing it to their friends.  

“It’s become popular [to have] very heavy concentration in juniors and seniors,” Brown said. “Our numbers will probably go down next year; our junior class will still be huge but you never know … I have a lot of kids that joined late in their high school career so that may continuously keep going as well.”

With the new big team the goals are not only to continue to do well in all of their meets but also to bond as a team like they have in the past. 

“Hard work and fun. When you can combine those two things in a quality way that’s just what will make a team most successful,” Brown said. “Now beyond that of course we want to win as many meters as we can, and place as high as many meets as we can.” 

The team also hopes to win League and return to State this year. 

“League of course always a goal to win the league meets. Get as many people to state as possible. Get as many people into the finals of State and get as many of those state cuts for that,” Brown said. “So I guess those would be more of our team goals there and then of course, keep the team camaraderie that we have, keep that going.” 

With all of these goals the pressures on for the senior captains this year. The captains this year are Chris Che, Zander Say, and Brandon Spielman.

“We look forward to a lot of good leadership from them,” Brown said. “I think some of them they’ll help bring a lot of effort and discipline to the team.” 

This week, the swim and dive team will begin practice at the Kansas State Natatorium.