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The Spectator

The student news site of Lake Forest Academy

The Spectator

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Gabby Wang, Staff Writer • February 13, 2024

Girls Varsity Swimming sets new precedents at ISL Championships

On October 28th, LFA’s Girls Varsity Swimming team won second place at the ISL Championships. In the meet against the Latin School of Chicago and University High School, Lake Forest Academy attained a total of 168 points, winning seven events and setting three new records for the 2023 year. 

Senior Tuana Turhan ’24 won two individual titles at the 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly, setting a winning record of 58.97 seconds (100 butterfly) while Katherine Graham ’24 won the 50 freestyle, and junior Defne Kocak ’26 took first place in the 200 IM and 100 breaststroke. 

“We had shining results, but everyone achieved their personal best time, and that’s what the kids and myself are proud of,” said Kee Ng, head coach of the Girl Varsity Swim Team. 

To Ng, the girls’ formidable achievement is evident in streamlined training. 

“My approach consists of four main components: Technique, Strategization, Hard Work, and Tapering,” said Ng. “Water is 800 times more resistant than air, and we must find ways to reduce resistance as we learn how to approach the specific events. More importantly, all swimmers engage in tapering to recover from muscle pains, soreness, and cramps before the championships,” Ng states. 

To the swimmers, the effectiveness of training stems from maintaining a strong rapport between students, managers, and coaches. 

“We are motivated by the rest of the team,” said Henry Gold ’24, manager of the girls swim team. “When everyone puts in the effort, we see it, we emulate the efforts, and embrace it together,” Gold stated. 

As manager, Gold taught novice swimmers by demonstrating techniques, optimized the lineups to best face our opponents, and assisted the coaches while bringing up the team morale as captain Kate Graham led the stretches and pep talks. 

With robust morale, each swimmer can dedicate themselves to perfecting the necessary techniques. To maintain optimal performance, swimmers spent hours mastering stroke technique and aerobic strength. 

At each practice, older swimmers stood on the decks to guide younger swimmers in practicing their breaststroke pullout and block dives. 

“You are competing against the water,” said Ng. “You are not racing against other swimmers, and it is important for you to focus right as you start from the block,” Ng mentioned. 

The presence of camaraderie instills one with the motivation and competitive drive that prompts swimmers to practice their technique until it becomes second nature. 

With ISLs concluding with two new school records for the 200 medley and 200 freestyle relay, we look forward to the girls as they look to their achievements as inspiration to strive for future excellence.

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