It has been a while since the University of Dallas Swim Club pierced the water for a competition. Their last meet came on Feb. 6, when they competed in the Baylor Swim Club Invitational. Since then, the team has been preparing relentlessly for their championship meet, which comes this weekend at the Southwest Swim League Championships, hosted in Richardson, Texas, at the University of Texas at Dallas (UTD).
Each swimmer has done his part in order to prepare for the final meet. For senior captain and club founder Jake Loel, the meet represents one final opportunity to add to an already impressive legacy. This weekend, however, is not about individual accomplishment for Loel.
“Honestly, I think our ladies have a shot to win it this year,” Loel said.
Indeed, the ladies have been working tirelessly the past few months to prepare for their respective events. Freshman Maureen O’Toole, in preparation for the 50-meter butterfly and 100-meter freestyle, has been working to improve her technique.
“I’m really excited to race the 50 fly,” O’Toole said. “I’m always trying to fix my stroke whenever I can to make it better.”
In addition to individual races, the ladies have a wonderful opportunity to rack up some points in the relays, as was exemplified in their last meet at Baylor.
“If our relays can place high, it should be possible to win,” sophomore Julia Ringel said, voicing her optimism.
On the men’s side, Loel and junior sprinter Nick Dodson look to lead in the water. Dodson, a consistent top finisher in previous meets, has also been working to improve his technique, specifically in his breaststroke form.
“I’ve been working on refining my breaststroke kick technique and speeding up my turnovers,” Dodson said. “On a personal level, I am shooting for a strong finish in the 50 freestyle and the 200-yard breaststroke.”
Reflecting upon the season as a whole, there is much to be optimistic about, especially considering the growth in numbers and participation for the club.
“The freshman class brought in a lot of talent and a solid base to build upon,” Dodson remarked. “The championship is a great opportunity for our team to show what we are truly capable of.”
While it will be the last competitive meet of Loel’s career, the rest of the club looks to succeed this weekend in order to set a precedent for future years to come. After months of hard work, it seems that they most definitely have the tools necessary to accomplish this.