They got fifth at state last year. This year, they were undefeated in duel meets and became district champions. All of the hard work and practices that started back in November lead up to this moment: their redeeming, second place finish at state.
How did the Waukee Boys’ Swim Team prepare for perhaps their most important meet of the season? “To prepare for state we tapered,” explains senior Mitchell Pollitt. “That pretty much just means a higher intensity workouts with less yards. We tapered for three weeks leading up to state.” The lower numbers in the weeks leading up to the meet were much appreciated by members of the team. “It was nice to get a little more rest after a long hard season,” says Pollitt.
Making it to state is not easy. Members of the team are chosen by the coaches to compete at the district meet. Coaches decide who competes at districts by selecting the fastest three swimmers from each individual event, as well as forming three relays with members that have proven to have successful split times throughout the season. At districts, the top 24 finishers from each event throughout all of the competing schools qualify for state.“The district cut was tough this year,” says Pollitt, “but we had a solid team going into state.”
Who were the members that made up this team? Competing swimmers included Drew Reiter, Cooper Crouse, Eli Waltman, Cameron Linder, Davis Kuhlers, Augie Muenzenmay, Mitchell Pollitt, Campbell Patterson, and Carter Moseley. The alternates included Sam Cross, Jackson Whitaker, and Caleb Nichols. Coming off of a huge win at districts, the pressure was on to do well at state. “At the beginning of the year, [Coach] Dan told us that we could be a top three team if we really wanted it, so I guess that was our goal as a team,” states Pollitt.
“Obviously, as a team, we wanted to win the meet,” explains junior Cameron Linder, “but we went into the meet second and finished second, so we can’t be too mad.” Along with a successful second-place finish, the team accomplished many other things at their state championship meet. “Our relays were especially impressive,” states Pollitt. “ the 200 and 400 relays got new school records so that was something to be proud of.”
“We got four records, a few All-American swims, and lots of personal best times,” explains Linder. “There isn’t much that could’ve gone better. The only thing that could’ve gone better is having more people qualify for the meet.” In the end, one of the most important things is how team members feel about their season. “Overall, I’m really proud of how supportive the team was all season long,” says Pollitt. “Whenever there was a Waukee swimmer in the water, there was a group cheering them on. That was really cool, and that’s what I’m going to remember most about the team, they really want each other to succeed.”
“I’m just really happy with the outcome and super proud of the team for always believing in themselves and trying their best no matter what,” Linder states. “We’re gonna miss all of the great seniors that helped make the season so great.”