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ASU swim and dive off to a hot start due to strong team work ethic

Both ASU swim and dive teams look to continue their strong start into the heart of the season for the first time since 2019-20

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ASU then-freshman Andrew Gray swims the men’s 200-meter freestyle during an intra-team scrimmage on Friday, Sept. 27, 2019, at the Mona Plummer Aquatic Complex in Tempe.

ASU swim and dive is off to a hot start to the season, and most of that comes down to the team's work ethic and initiative. 

These qualities were shown at both the Maroon and Gold Intrasquad meet on Oct. 1 and at the women's team's opening meet at Washington State on Oct. 16, where the team won 157-105. The whole team performed at a high level to lead the Sun Devils to the win, with both experienced redshirt seniors and less experienced redshirt and true freshmen providing great performances.

"The atmosphere is awesome, everyone cheering for each other, the team culture, everyone's supporting each other. And yeah, we really love pushing each other to our best to get the best for the team," freshman Charli Brown said after the Intrasquad meet.

Brown put up a big performance in her ASU debut, with victories in the 400-yard individual medley and the 400-yard medley relay. At the Intrasquad meet, she credited her training with team Olympians like freshman Léon Marchand and redshirt freshman Jarod Arroyo in helping to push her in practices.

"It's crazy to see what they can do and push myself against them and just have a good time," Brown said.

The men's team is just as ready as the women's team. Many of the men's swimmers had impressive performances at the Intrasquad meet, including redshirt sophomore Jack Dolan, whose performance in the 100-yard breaststroke earned him a loud reaction from his teammates. 

"We were doing a format where everyone does a 100 of each stroke and 100 IM (individual medley), and I got the opportunity to do it and I'm not really that great at it," Dolan said.

The team built anticipation for Dolan's race, and the team's reaction to his impressive performance spoke for itself.

The women's team win at Washington State is an important sign that both the men's and women's teams are making a smooth transition into competition after last year's canceled season and two classes of athletes who have not raced in NCAA competition yet. Head coach Bob Bowman emphasized the importance of having a good work ethic throughout the season.

READ MORE: After a yearlong hiatus, ASU swim and dive is eager to get back in the pool

"A lot of them got nervous about it, they got up and swam the first event, they swam kind of tight and nervous. And we're like, you're gonna fail, fail big. That's okay, you'll learn something from it, we'll move on," Bowman said. "But what I want them to do is every time they get up there, to know that they've got support behind them and that they're prepared to swim. And if they do that, they're gonna learn a lot. And that's how they're going to climb the ladder."

The ASU men's swim and dive team is currently ranked 13th and the women's team is ranked 22nd in the nation in the CSCAA Division I national poll.

The women's team faces off against UCLA Nov. 5 in Tempe and the men's team faces USC Nov. 6 in Tempe.

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Shane BrennanEditor-in-Chief

Shane Brennan is the Editor-in-Chief at The State Press. He was a sports and politics reporter, before becoming the editor of the politics desk. He has covered local and state politics for the Arizona Capitol Times and Cronkite News.

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