Rosalia Murphy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
After what seemed like a three-month break, Ursinus athletics is back on track. Once COVID-19 testing has been in place for about two weeks, winter sports are expected to kick off the final part of their seasons: a five-week ‘practice’ season, similar to last semester. For the men and women’s swim teams, this means getting back in the gym and pool. Not having seen their teammates much over break due to COVID restrictions, the teams are eager to pick up right where they left off.
Last semester, both the men’s and women’s teams were able to successfully practice and remember what a “normal” season would be like. However, will the same energy this team had in their first semester carry over into this one? Junior member of the men’s team, Matt Snyder, talks about what he hopes to get out of this next mini-season: “This semester is more difficult because we don’t have a conference meet, but I am looking forward to spending time with my teammates and preparing my body for next year.” Another junior member of the men’s team, Ryan Carkhuff, says something similar: “I am looking to get a lot of technique work out of these five weeks, and I am also looking forward to being back in the pool with my teammates and enjoying this last semester with the seniors.” Additionally, the women’s team has some related ideas. “More so practicing techniques and skill work, as well as fine tuning things so that we can work on being better for next year,” states junior member of the women’s team, Oliviah Rachael.
In terms of maintaining the closeness of this team, both the men’s and women’s side has had success, even though break restricted them from being able to see each other. Senior member of the women’s team, Allie Thomas, states, “The team stayed as close as we could, under the current conditions, and we hope to continue growing closer while still following COVID guidelines.” She expects this to go well. “I do not see us getting further apart — I see us getting closer as friends.”
While not having a season is a disappointment for this team, there are still goals that they hope to work towards. As far as the men’s team goes, junior member Matt Seeburger has some goals that he hopes will set the team up for next year: “I think something to work on this semester is getting our technique straightened out and something we won’t have to spend as much time on that next season. Instead, we will be able to focus more on our physical limits.” Snyder finishes with some of the main goals he has for the team in order to be ready to go next semester: “Staying focused when we have our ‘season’ so by the time we have a real season, we can hit the ground running. Focus on what we have to do in and out of the water.”
Another junior member of the women’s team, Sophie Lear, talks about some goals she hopes to achieve to make the team as successful as possible next year. “I think that doing our best to virtually recruit swimmers is important to maintaining and growing and rebuilding the future of our program.” Thomas adds in some closing thoughts on her hopes for this team in its next season: “I think building a good team dynamic, and working towards the same goal of trying to win another Centennial Conference championship will be very important for us.”
We wish nothing but the best for both the men’s and women’s team as they take on the next part of their season. Go Bears!