Swim reaches for success

The swim team prepares for the upcoming season and aims to continue a tradition of success.

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Swim reaches for success

Kalli Thommen/THE CHIMES [file photo]

Kalli Thommen/THE CHIMES [file photo]

Kalli Thommen/THE CHIMES [file photo]

Kalli Thommen/THE CHIMES [file photo]

Jehn Kubiak, Writer

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The swim team works hard to prepare for their upcoming season with their first swim meet for the Pacific Collegiate Swim and Dive Conference occurring on Oct. 9 and 10 at Splash Aquatics Center. At this meet, all the swimmers either swim freestyle or individual medley events. Senior Kenny Alcosiba said many swimmers place well in this first meet, which also indicates ways each swimmer can improve individually.

TOP FINISHES

The swim team’s season last year proved successful. Different swimmers earned top finishes in individual events and the team excelled against schools like Concordia University Irvine and Azusa Pacific University.

The swimmers finished strong at the NAIA National Championship meet last spring, shattering 17 different school records. The men finished 10th while the women finished seventh. The team also demonstrated success in relay events with three all-American finishes — placing in the top three — in the women’s relays. Biola shined in the diving events when senior Shane Brinson, the team’s only diver, placed third in the one-meter dive.

Sophomore Lisa Tixier stood out as a freshman last year and set two new records for Biola’s swim team at the NAIA national championships. She set records for the 100 free with a time of 50:91 and 400 IM with a time of 4:28.72. Alcosiba also recorded many top finishes in individual events last season and was an alternate for the top 10 in finals.

HOPES TO EXCEL

Tixier and Alcosiba said the team hopes to excel at nationals again this year and anticipates a stronger finish since a couple of rival schools, such as Oklahoma Baptist University and CUI, moved to a higher division. The swimmers put forth a lot of effort into conditioning and swimming many yards at practices to build the same high level of success this year. Tixier said they started a program with more weights and spend time doing different exercises in the weight room on Monday and Friday mornings in addition to swimming in the pool.

“We started another program where we have more weights that we’ve been working on, trying to get things done fast —and a lot of different exercises,” Tixier said.

Tixier said the team builds a strong community of encouragement and support, helping each other to push through fatigue and stay strong despite starting the season with hard work. In addition to physical workouts, the team spends time in community.

“We’re trying to get a bit closer spiritually and emotionally too. It’ll help a lot during a swim meet — trying to be selfless,” Alcosiba said.

Tixier and Alcosiba both stressed the importance of staying healthy and maintaining a positive mindset. Tixier said the team works on getting back in shape and then transitioning into working on technique.

“We always try to improve from before and work on various things that we were working on last year, but then there’s always more things to be aware of and work on in your strokes, and we’re trying to fix them to be ready for our first meet,” Tixier said.

MORE AWAY MEETS

The team also competes at more away meets this year, from the Bay Area to Alaska, and Tixier said completing school work may be a challenge.

Alcosiba looks forward to travel meets, enjoying the community and conversation, while Tixier said she anticipates the ways the team has improved this year.

“Everyone’s grown bolder and stronger, especially the freshmen—seeing what they can do. Last year I felt like I grew a lot in the year, both physically, swimming well, and spiritually and mentally,” Tixier said.