The Fort Atkinson girls swim team was one of few sports lucky enough to receive somewhat of a 2020-2021 fall sports season.
“I am very happy that swim was able to have a season because my personal sports season was cancelled. So, swim was a way for me to stay fit and active in the fall,” says first year swimmer Alyssa Heagney.
The girls were able to get a few meets in this year; however, they were all duals to keep it Covid friendly. Sadly, the differences in previous years to this one, did not end here. Similar to the other sports that were lucky enough to have seasons, many precautions were taken to keep everyone safe. When the swim team was in the water they were all required to swim in opposite lanes, and when they were not in the water masks needed to be on. They also kept the spectators strictly to the parents of the athletes. Despite the difficult regulations, the girls were happy to find themselves amongst each other, and kept in mind that something was better than nothing.
“I am glad we were able to make these adjustments and be able to have our season. We were able to get a few meets in, and everyone was dropping time like crazy. There was an overwhelming amount of PRs for each event.” says junior Lily Belzer.
When school was shut down on Sept. 21, 2020 swim went down with it. These were times where everything was seemingly unknown, and was hard on many of the athletes. What many athletes found helpful was the fact that the program consists of a tight knit group of friends. Knowing that no matter where they turned, they could find a teammate as well as a friend, was something of importance to many of the girls.
“I had a lot of fun being on the swim team. The people are super friendly and great people. The coaches were very nice and encouraging. Overall, it was a very good environment to be in,” says Heagney.
“I joined swim to stay in shape and to just try it out. I am now a better athlete and a better person from being with all the girls and coaches even if it was a short season,” says Hagney, taking a positive swing on her shortened season. The girls swim team may not have had their typical season this year, but given what they had the girls refused to let any opportunity thrown their way go underappreciated. Among the bad they were able to find good, and many found that, that was the most important part of it all.