Swim teams takes first and heads to regionals


Senior Randi Ford comes up for air in her event at the District 8-6A swim meet. (Michelle Villegas photo)

After months of preparation the swim team won first place in the district swim meet  and is headed to regionals  in Lewisville on Feb 3.

“This preparation started last year as soon as the 2015-2016 season ended,” swim coach Stephanie Bernier said. “This was a full body commitment that the that they began to embody starting a year ago and they prepared for that battle every day.”

With the swim meet taking place here in Duncanville Bernier said winning the title was a must with every member striving for the best til the last race was over.

“It was so great to be able to compete in our house and that was a title we were not willing to let go, a slight reminder here and there helped the swimmers push through,” Bernier said. “We kept the intensity and spirit high by treating it like a marathon, it wasn’t over until the last race.”

Bernier said she is very proud of her swimmers and can not wait to see how far they will go into the competition.

“I am so excited to bring the championship title back home,” Bernier said. “Now it will be harder to be forgotten. More than anything I am most excited that these students-athletes were able to see over a year of hard work and dedication pay off.”

Although the district meet was held at home, there was no guarantee of winning the district meet. This is why the swimmers agree they had to focus on what their coach was telling them all year long.

“We were physically and mentally ready, which in my mind is key,” senior swimmer Reginald Shed said.  “The team and I have worked strenuously to prepare for Districts and Coach Brenier would reassure us saying as long as we gave our all we would be fine. Keeping in mind techniques and strategies and staying confident.”

With the win Bernier hopes people will acknowledge the team and want to join.

“Swimming is not a prominent sport in our area,” Bernier said. “ It is hard to get people involved and to the level of dedication that is required to be truly successful in a football/basketball town. Creating an atmosphere of champions and working hard in a spot like swimming will always be the toughest obstacle to overcome.”

In an effort to win the district title, the team members say they worked together to change the atmosphere surrounding every part of their season.

“We all believed that we would be successful this year,” senior qualifier Randi Ford said.  “The whole energy felt different, and everyone felt encouraged.”

Heading into district Ford held one of the fastest times in the district.

“This added a bit of pressure, as that gave me a better chance of winning first place,” Ford said.  But I knew that  if I made any mistakes that first place spot could be taken away from me.”

Bernier said winning is never promised but it is never out of reach which pushes the team to strive for first every time.

“They learned that the best successes are not immediate. This will ultimately make them better human beings,” Bernier said.

Now that district is over getting prepared for regionals is the teams primary goal. Bernier said the team will be working on getting faster and not losing motivation.

“I told them after our win that “we just won the battle, now it’s time to go to war with our times,” Bernier said. “The regional meet is very different from the District meet. We have ten times as many teams, and the competition is 100 percent more fierce.”

With regional around the corner the swim team will be working nonstop to prepare for the tough competition as they set their mind on the task ahead of them.

“I am going to imagine myself swimming my race and be sure to focus and remember I have just as much of a chance to win as the rest of my competition,” Shed said.  “Also listening to a couple of uplifting gospel songs while stretching will help me to get in my zone.”