Is younger faster? This year, boys’ varsity swimming, one of Deerfield’s most successful teams, seeks to explore that notion, with new and returning underclassmen making huge contributions to the team in points and work ethic.
Captain Austin Bridges ’12 spoke positively about the young blood on the team. On top of contributing crucial points in swim meets, “They bring a tremendous amount of talent to the program,” he said. “They work hard in practice and inspire some of the older swimmers by setting a fast pace.”
Quinn Smith ’14 is the fastest swimmer on the team for the 200-meter individual medley and the 100-meter breaststroke. Last year, he placed fifth in the New England Championship in the 100-meter breaststroke. As Smith put it, “The team didn’t have young swimmers last year, so having new incoming, talented swimmers is helpful to both this and future seasons.”
The new underclassmen also add some much needed depth to the team.
Freshman Matt Hrabchak ’15 comes to the team with impressive swimming experience. Last year he won the New England Championship for his club swimming league in the 1,000-yard, mile, and the 500-yard freestyle, qualifying for the Junior National Championships. This year, he is the number one swimmer for the 200 and the 500-meter freestyle events. So far, Hrabchak has had a positive experience swimming in the Koch Pool. “It’s a good team, good guys, and everyone’s willing to put a lot of effort into our ultimate goal of winning New England’s,” he said.
Motts “Pistol” Warnock ’14, who swims the 50-meter freestyle, also adds young talent to the roster and has already improved tremendously over the course of the season. Travis Russell ’14, along with Warnock, adds another degree of breadth to the talented group of sprinters. Newcomers Alan Lam ’15 and Alan Tang ’14 build on the strength of the long distance swimmers.
Both Smith and Hrabchak give an enormous amount of praise to their coaches, including Head Coach John Burke and Assistant Coach Wayne Berger. Hrabchack proclaimed, “Our coaches are very passionate about their coaching positions and help us strive to do better.”
The team, young and old, is enduring long practices and competitive meets as they strive to achieve their overall goal of taking home the gold at the New England Champioship on March 3.