Every Team Has A Story: Northside Dolphins

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The Maclay Northside Dolphins have been competing for a few years now, but it wasn't until last month in the Junior Olympics in Gainesville, Florida that they began to make waves.

"Some of them started from not even being able to breathe on the side, less than 2 years to being able to go to the Junior Olympics, so we have made a lot of progress. We have had kids come from not even thinking about competition swimming to swimming at a fairly high level," says Dolphins coach Bob Ruth.

Two years ago, the Dolphins had one swimmer compete in the national event. Last year, 7 made the trip. This year, the Dolphins sent a personal best 19 swimmers to the Junior Olympics.

"It was fun and really competitive, I just swam as fast as I can, and I had fun," says swimmer Joey Gerard.

"It's really big and it's really loud, but it's kind of just like a normal meet, just a lot bigger," adds swimmer Emily Kennedy.

The progress can be attributed to hard work. The Dolphins practice long shifts all year round.

"I usually 2 hours and 45 minutes every day, 4 to 5 days a week," cites Mike Fennema.

The works not all that bad when it all pays off.

"Our season actually began about a year ago. August 24th, and from then until now, I think we have been off 2 and a half weeks," concludes coach Ruth.

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