Breaking a 2001 200-Yard Individual Medley pool record and reducing his own 100-Yard Freestyle pool record from last year, Co-Captain Arnold Su ’20 propelled Andover Boys Swimming & Diving to a 142-44 win in the team’s season opener against Choate on Saturday. With these two victories, the team now holds all of the records in its own pool for the first time since 1983.
The team swept the meet with Zack Peng ’21 winning the diving competition with a score of 301.85 and Johann Asmus Leon ’20 and Bennett Pease ’21 placing third and fifth, respectively.
According to Peng, the diving team worked hard to focus on technique in the short amount of time it had before the meet.
“Everyone is continuing to improve to work upon their weaknesses and just have a good season. I think since we’ve only had four days of practice since coming back from break, it was soon to jump right into things, but from this first meet I could tell our mindset as a team was where we wanted it to be and performance wise was successful in general,” said Peng.
According to Ralph Lam ’22, the team achieved the objectives it set before the meet and maintained a supportive environment.
“We definitely beat all of our goals which was great to see. Everyone was very satisfied with their overall performance and we’ve been working really hard so far… I think that the team was able to keep up high spirits… I think that staying supportive is one of our greatest strengths as a team,” Lam said.
Andover had a late start to its competition season, which allowed the team to utilize the winter break as a bonding and training experience, according to Su. The team travelled to Miami, Fla., for five days and practiced twice a day.
“The Florida trip was a great opportunity for the team to swim while focusing solely on training hard without the distractions a typical Andover life would have. We were able to push ourselves and each other more, as well as get to know each other better and bond more as a team. In the end, we left Florida with great training, a stronger sense of team, and a memorable experience,” wrote Su in an email to The Phillipian.
The team looks to work on its rest and recovery after racing to improve its performances in the future.
Lam said, “A lot of us after a race are extremely tired and our muscles are sore, so we aren’t able to get back into it for the next race… I hope that we are able to keep working hard, given that we are starting the season now.”
According to Head Coach David Fox, the back-to-back racing and strong competition from Peddie this weekend will prepare the team for one of its biggest meets of the season, Easterns, which takes place in February and the team won for the first time in program history last year.
Fox said, “This weekend is a great opportunity to keep practicing for the Eastern Championships. The back-to-back meets are unusual and challenging, but they carry over well to championship meets. Historically, Peddie is among the most storied programs in high school swimming, and we always get excited to race them.”
Andover will face St. John’s Prep this Friday in its final home meet of the season and travel to Suffield Academy on Saturday to compete in a tri-meet with Suffield and Peddie.
Editor’s note: Ralph Lam is an Associate Video Editor for The Phillipian.