Swim team succeeds at preliminaries

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Eleanor Bogart-Stuart culture editor

Girls and boys varsity swim teams swam at CIF preliminaries this past Thursday at El Segundo with great success, despite Samo and El Segundo teams dominating the scoreboards for most of the races.

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“Every player on the team has improved and at every meet I’m proud to call myself a Norman and be able to support them,” sophomore JV swimmer Eli Aminpour said.

The members on boys varsity, although not placing in every event, broke many of their own personal records. Juniors Danny Barroukh and Pouya Reihanian broke their respective times in the 200 yard freestyle. Sophomore Gil Eshkol and Junior Serge Albarian set personal bests in the 50 yard freestyle. Junior Greg Yaroshevsky beat his previous time in the 100 yard freestyle by approximately four full seconds.

The girls team was also quite successful. Junior Jamie Dodd placed second in the 200 yard freestyle and first in the 500 yard freestyle. In the 50 yard freestyle, senior Lorien Orpelli qualified in third place, as well as junior Skylar Smith in fifth. Orpelli and Smith placed the same in the 100 yard freestyle. Olympic trials qualifier junior Amy Okada, unsurprisingly, placed first in both the 100 yard breaststroke and 100 yard butterfly, where she set a league record at 56.60 seconds.

“I was nervous and excited for my races overall because it’s always nerve wracking to see if all your hard work in practice pays off. But being at the meets, especially league prelims, can be really stressful so it’s nice to just have fun with your friends, cheer everyone on, and not put too much pressure on yourself,” varsity swimmer junior Maggie Curtis said.

The team may not have placed in every event during this Thursday’s CIF preliminaries, but many swimmers managed to break their personal records.

“I’m very proud of the swimmers. We had a large number of swimmers do their best times evers. We just had a team meeting where we went through all of the swimmers who broke their personal bests. It’s wonderful to end a season, for a lot of these kids, with their best times ever,” swim coach Donald Graham said.

The girls team also broke quite a lot of their own records. Junior Audry Levy broke her best in the 200 yard freestyle, junior Maggie Curtis broke hers in the 100 yard IM. Sophomore Sara Okum set her best in the 100 yard freestyle.

Check out the swim team this Friday back at El Segundo to see how they fare in the final rounds before CIF.

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