BY KAYLA SOUSA & REBECA PEREIRA
The swim season is coming to a close and the Malden High School swim team is going out with a bang. With MHS heading to a new league next season and the GBL dissolving, MHS has become the final GBL champion, cementing the legacy of the MHS team with a 5th fifth win a row.
Going into the last season of the GBL wasn't an easy task as many seniors who were extremely talented last year graduated. However, with the addition of many new swimmers with great potential and talent, the swim team dominated all others and were able to exceed expectations. This season, everyone made a substantial contribution to the GBL victory, as swimmers participated in various events.
While this season was challenging in some aspects, it has also been a season full of excitement and enthusiasm. Sophomore Sebastian Romani describes the intensity of each moment spent competing and elaborates on how when they “won all [their] meets, which was such a great bonding moment for all.”
Romani has made personal gains too, dropping his 100 meter fly time by 8 seconds and does not hesitate to credit his coaches and teammates for the help and support saying “[the whole team] did better than expected and [he] wouldn’t have been able to make it through without the support of [everyone].” In regards to being given the opportunity to swim in more events, he stated it made him “feel like the coaches believe and have faith in [him].”
Pamela Coelho, sophomore swimmer, stated that “this season presented itself with some challenges,” however, “[their] competitors were easy opponents, thanks to the hard daily practice that [raised everyone’s level].” Ultimately, Pamela stated that “the team was [especially] determined to beat Medford, [their] oldest GBL rival in the last GBL season.”
Personally, Coelho admits that “this season was challenging for [her]” as she was put in events “that at first [she] wasn't comfortable in” like the 200 free. However she was able to get out of her comfort zone with consistent practice helping the event “became easier over the course of the season.”
Agatha Silva, who also is a sophomore swimmer from Malden High School, stated that “[she] loved the swim season from beginning to end and that [she wished] it wouldn't end because it means the upperclassmen are leaving.”
At first, Silva admits that the team was “scared for the [first] meet because a lot of the swimmers weren’t really as ready yet, and so, some swimmers were depended on more,” but was pleasantly surprised when they prevailed. Silva is extremely proud at what the team has accomplished this year knowing that they are the last GBL champs for the swim season and has established “a sense of pride that is unimaginable.” Still, Silva is optimistic in the sense that “new and fresh kids are coming in and [is] excited to see what they can offer the team.”
Senior Captain Vivian Nguyen shared Silva’s feeling about this season. As this is her last year at MHS and on the MHS swim team, she feels great pride in the team and the progress they’ve made saying “being GBL champs during the last year in the GBL league is something [they] are all proud of.” The personal bests that were reached during the season “just means that there is so much more to come with the underclassmen in upcoming years.”
Sophomore Joanne Ho added that “this season was definitely a great season, especially being the last time [they] are competing in the GBL.” She is overall looking forward to the new league next year because “there will be extremely difficult and fresh competition that [they] aren't used to.” To Ho, her biggest opponent of the year was Malden Catholic as they usually are a tough component, so beating Malden Catholic “was one of the most satisfying [moments of the season].”
Most of the current juniors will bring in 3 years of of MHS swim experience and sophomores two years into the new league next year. With this amount of enough experience and talent, MHS will definitely become a tough competitors in the new league.
Freshman Haoxi Wang stated that “the most memorable moment for [him] personally, was the first day of practice when [they] all practiced together in one pool.” He hopes that the camaraderie he has come to value in his team will continue in the following seasons stating that he looks forward to the next season because of “[his] fellow swimmers and friends that make up the team,” thanking them for making the “practices just a little bit easier and more fun to endure.”
Next season, the swim team will be entering the Northeastern Conference. In new league, they hope to keep up their winning streak.