The Boys’ Varsity Swim Team Ties for First Place in Queens 1 Division

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The Boys’ Varsity Swim Team finished the 2020 season in first place in the Queens 1 division with a 9-1 record.  Although the team lost to Stuyvesant High School 58-40 in the second round of the playoffs, the Patriots maintained a 5 game winning streak throughout the regular season. 

Swim team members reflected on what the team means to them during the school year.

“Swimming plays a role in my life because everyday after school we go to practice,” freshman Joseph Kim said. “Since I’m a freshman, they help me learn the ropes about the school and swimming.” 

Sophomore Jeff Lam explained the seriousness and dedication required of swimmers while practicing.

“Swimming is a more demanding sport where it requires you to always practice,” Lam said. “Even if you miss one day, you need 2 days to get back on track. Technique and strength both play a part in sport and you just need to have that mental capacity to work on both of them.”

A few swimmers on the team had prior experience before joining the Patriots. 

 “My mom made me swim,” sophomore Brain Haung said, “but once I got into high school swimming, your teammates inspire you to keep on going.” 

Just like any other team, the Boys’ Swim Team competes with different high schools throughout New York City.

“York High School for Science is our huge competitor for Queens,” Coach Cardona stated. “Then once we get into the city division, Stuyvesant becomes a huge competition.”

“Three years ago and this year the team won the Queens Division Championships, so they were the top in Queens,” Coach Cardona said. “This year we tied for top in Queens with York. Individually, we have two swimmers from our team, one from girls and one from boys, who are at West Point Military Academy, which is a huge deal.”

Coach Cardona has been coaching the Boys’ Swim Team for 4 years as she shares her experience and perspective of the team. 

“In the beginning, there were a lot of new students being taught to swim and now they are experts and awesome at it,” Coach Cardona said. “It’s not teaching them how to swim anymore, it’s just getting better and faster. They go to practice, they work really hard, but they also have fun and are silly. After practice they go out to dinners and get together and there’s a lot of playing around that they do. Our school is really good with finding a way to make it fun.”

Swimming has played a significant role in their lives. It impacts their overall well being as they work hard to achieve their best results.

“I feel like the biggest rivals would be between ourselves because we are always trying to compete for a spot to swim in, especially in relays,” Kwong said. 

As the team has formed such close bonds with one another, they have found that they are each other’s motivation. 

“What pushed me were my friends who were faster so I wanted to be just as fast as them,” senior and Captain Alexander Lee said.

“I have a message for future swimmers,” Kwong said. “Just because you go to practice, that does not mean you become faster. Work on that technique.”