As the Orange Lutheran swim and dive team gets back in the pool this spring, the Lancers are continuing to build upon what was started when the aquatics program arrived on campus.
Approximately 80 swimmers will participate this year, nearly double from the program’s inception. And last year, OLu fielded their first dive team with sophomore returning diver Gabriella Russell.
OLu aquatics head coach Steve Carrera acknowledges that as a member of the Trinity League and Division 1, goals for the program include an eventual league championship and increasing the number of individual swimmers who qualify for CIF. With several swimmers already clocking fast qualifying times, the team is hoping to add depth across each event.
Several dual and multi-sport athletes make up this year’s roster, not just from water polo, but also from other sports such as football, basketball and soccer. Carrera believes that for those students who have an interest in swim, there is a place for them on the Lancer team.
“We’d like to see those kids on campus who swam when they were younger and are in another sport now, not aquatic related, to come out and do swimming,” says Carrera.
With six coaches on staff who focus not only on the varsity swimmers, but also on development-level athletes, Carrera is looking forward to a season of growth and is grateful for the investment the school is making into the program.
“It’s a great sport, with a lot of team camaraderie,” says Carrera. “I think there are a lot of students on campus who are searching for something. Being a part of the swim team will make them a part of something bigger.”by Jenelyn Cunningham Russo ‘88