Boys Swimming beats local rival

Team perseveres through competitive meet

Senior+Benen+Cotter+swims+the+100-yard+breaststroke+Jan.+27.+Parks+next+meet+is+6%3A00+p.m.+Feb.+3+at+St.+Louis+Park+High+School.

Ava Ashby

Senior Benen Cotter swims the 100-yard breaststroke Jan. 27. Park’s next meet is 6:00 p.m. Feb. 3 at St. Louis Park High School.

Lilia Gonzalez

Coming into the meet against crosstown foe Benilde St. Margaret’s, senior captain Hiro Mckee, said the team had very high expectations for its meet, as it usually ends up beating Benilde.

“We were coming into this expecting to win because Benilde St. Margarets is our biggest rival and we’ve never lost to them before,” Mckee said. 

Coach Joe Yager said the team really had to step up during the Jan. 27 meet as Benilde started to catch up to their scores and because many swimmers recently had a break due to COVID-19. 

“So we were pretty confident but later on once we got a little bit more information, we were like, ‘oh, this is gonna be close,’” Yaeger said. “Especially with some guys coming back from COVID restrictions and having that break with COVID, it was kinda like they had to step up.”

According to freshman Magnus Smith, Benilde’s scores were a lot closer compared to other teams it has faced this season.

“I thought it was gonna be a closer meet because they have closer times to us than Cooper or Jefferson,” Smith said. 

Mckee said that although the team didn’t perform it’s best, he is happy that it put in its highest effort and won. 

“I feel like a lot of our swimmers weren’t very happy with their times, but that doesn’t matter,” Mckee said.

“I just say as long as you win and you try your best, like who cares. You won.””

— Hiro Mckee

According to Yaeger, despite many JV swimmers swimming varsity this meet, the team performed great overall. 

“A little bit towards the end due no JV and fast turn around for the boys, the boys got a little complacent in certain areas. But overall, they took care of business,“ Yaeger said. 

Park will face off against Bloomington Jefferson at 6 p.m. Feb. 3 at home.