Where there once stood a group of nervous freshmen athletes, anxious
to show their worth at a meet, now stands a group of confident and excited swimmers. With
two meets under their belts, the ASU swim and dive team’s freshmen are ready to take on whatever challenges come their
Making the transition from high school to collegiate athletics is difficult in any sport as the level of competition and expectations rise. That is no different for the swim team, which tirelessly trains following a successful weekend meet at home.
The freshmen swimmers are already coming along well and are using these first meets to learn, freshman swimmer Joe Worrick said.
“Compared to this time last year, I’m definitely a lot faster,” Worrick said. “I’m doing a lot better in season than I ever have before.”
This mentality is shared by most of the younger athletes following last weekend’s meet, and it is no doubt that the improvement can be attributed to the coaching and work the athletes have put in. There was a training camp over fall break and the hours of work put in every day are greatly increased from high school training.
“I knew it was going to be the hardest training I’ve ever done,” Worrick said. “We break it down to your specific strength, and you focus on what your good at.”
Nobody ever said being a collegiate athlete was easy, and freshmen Summer Luchsinger, a swimmer who only began swimming club two years prior to joining ASU’s squad, can attest to that.
“I’ve never imagined doing this intense of workouts and the amount of work we do is so much different,” Luchsinger said. “It’s challenging mentally to get through the hours of work being put in.”
These athletes don’t have to go through this alone, and can always look to anyone else on the large freshmen squad for support as they move forward in the season. The support of the team and family dynamic are one of the essential aspects of ASU swimming, Luchsinger said.
“It’s definitely reassuring that the person next to you is working just as hard as you are to get better,” she said. “We’re all there to support each other.”
The support is crucial for a number of athletes who work with the coaching staff to make sure that their season is on course, and that their school work is up to par.
“(Coach) Dan (Kesler) and I meet Monday mornings just so I know what I have going on for the week,” Worrick said.
This system has led the team to great improvements and after racing effectively over the weekend, it is looking to improve with each upcoming meet, head coach Dorsey Tierney-Walker said.
The season is still in its early stages, and the Sun Devils are looking forward to UCLA and USC, two highly competitive teams, but they are proud with what they have accomplished so far.
“I think it’s going to be a lot of ups from here,” Luchsinger said. “I’m excited to go more full force into it.”
Reach the reporter at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @nolankwit