Kevin Ochoa, sophomore at Malden High School, is in his second year swimming for the school after starting as a freshman. Ochoa remembers swimming as a child from the early age of 5 years old. He credits his start in swim to his mother who was eager to put Ochoa in swimming lessons.
From there he began taking swimming lessons and joined a team. Little did he know that not only would he be able to swim, but would also be able to be a strong component to the Malden High School swim team.
Directly from the start, Ochoa swam in lane 1 as a freshman. From there on out it was full speed for Kevin Ochoa’s swim career. He currently swims in lane 1 and his main events are the 200 freestyle and 100 fly, but due to his endurance he prefers the 200 freestyle as he likes long distance events.
To Ochoa joining swim has always been “a big dream” for him and felt that coming to the high school was “a great opportunity to represent his school as well as getting involved in sports.”
Ochoa acclaims his sense of leadership and maturity to the team. He believes that the swim team is like a family with no judgement, each individual displaying a great work ethic.
His favorite memory was of his first GBL title and how “after the big win [they] went to the Dockside as a team and enjoyed the title with all [his] team members” and claims that as the season went by, “the swim members became a part of [him],” says Ochoa.
He takes great pride in knowing that the team really cares about each other as individuals rather than solely based on their skills and that “the team has a bond that sets [them] apart from everyone else. [Their] team is a family and it inspires [them] to overcome all obstacles,” states Ochoa.
A close friend of Ochoa, Agatha Silva, also a sophomore swimmer, has known Ochoa for almost three years and claims that “[she] honestly [does] not know if [she] would be able to do swim without him” and that “ he is an amazing flyer and watching him leaves [her] in awe because [she] knows how much work he puts into the sport he loves.” Not only is he a great swimmer but also “a person that is always able to make the team laugh and he always checks up on the team if [they] look upset.” Silva states that, “the swim atmosphere would be completely different if [they] didn't have him on the team.”
Joanne Ho, also a sophomore swimmer, says that “Ochoa is a phenomenal swimmer and is one of the best on the team.” To Ho, Ochoa is dedicated “since he works hard at not one, but two practices a day since he swims for the YMCA Crocs.” She is in accord with Silva stating that “he is so supportive of everyone and is a huge part of why the team has gone undefeated this season.”
Another close friend Olivia Forestier, who is also another sophomore swimmer, says that “whether it be for swim or advice on life, [she] knows that he will always be there for [her].” Forestier not only states that he is an amazing swimmer but also that “he is a crucial part of [the] team and one of the many reasons [she] loves this sport.” To Forestier, “ his hard work and dedication has truly paid off and it does not go unnoticed.”
Apart from the great bond he shares with teammates, this season everyone has played a part in the contribution to being GBL champs with more people swimming more events. The swim team has been undefeated but Ochoa believes that “next year will be tough as [they] are going into a new league but [they] are staying positive.”
Outside of school Ochoa participates in the Ping Pong club, the Key club, The Red Cross, Y leaders, band and crew. He also swims for the YMCA club team.
He hopes that his great ambition for swim since the age of five will come true being the ability to swim in college and become recruited.