Swim and dive team focuses on quality over quantity


Lexi Doll, Staff Writer

The Portage Northern Men’s swim and dive team is off to a good start with a basically brand new team.  With the team still on the smaller side, they are slowly growing.  Last year’s team consisted of 12 swimmers whereas this years team has 19.  With the team only having about a month left in their season, they have only taken home one W.  With this unfortunate streak they are still determined and going stronger than ever.  “Despite our small size, as a team I feel we’ve done a really good job staying positive and motivating one another so that we achieve our personal goals,” says senior Marco Pastrana.

This team is a perfect example of the importance of quality over quantity.  With three state cuts already being made by junior William Compton in both the 100 backstroke and 100 butterfly, Marco Pastrana in the 100 backstroke and several MISCA cuts made as a team, they prove they don’t need the numbers in order to have the talent.  “Oftentimes we’ll win the majority of the races at a meet and have a lot of second places yet we still lose due to our lack of depth,” says Pastrana.

The scoring in the sport of swimming is quite often extremely unfair.  A very talented team like Portage Northern can go winless whereas a much less talented team can go undefeated just because of their size.  Portage Northern swimming has been robbed from many wins because of their small numbers but they don’t let it affect their performance.  Junior Jonathan Rhodes referencing the demoralizing feeling while losing to bigger teams says, “Despite this fact, this year we are able to bounce back faster and not let it bother us because we are are such a fun group that cares more about having fun and doing our best than about winning.”

Coach Jim Long says, “I’ve been extremely proud of our returning swimmers from last year.  They have stepped up in terms of their commitment to the team and to their own growth as an athlete.”  With the season coming to a close, the team is hoping to wow the conference at their conference championship meet February 23rd and 24th.  They are prepared to show that the heart of the team is what matters, not the size.