Sunshine State Swimming Reflects on Conference

By Abby Boone, Swimming World College Intern

LAKELAND – Sunshine State Swimming student-athletes took time out to reflect on the conference overall with winter training heading towards the spring semester.

The end of the year brings new resolutions and new beginnings, but every swimmer knows it doesn’t mean an end for the swim season. Instead, it is a reminder that the end of the winter swim season—and the big meet—is right around the corner.

College swimmers across the country are preparing for their conference meets and nationals, and every swimmer is excited for the season’s end.

As the closest conference in the nation, with all teams in the same state, the Sunshine State Conference (SSC) is especially competitive. As they head back to school for the end of the season, swimmers from each SSC team answered a few questions for Swimming World Magazine.

What is your favorite part about swimming for our conference? What are you most looking forward to as conference and nationals approach (both in the pool and out)? What do you want to accomplish at the end of the season?

Allison Chandler (University of Tampa)
I really love the SSC because it has so many fantastic swimmers to be able to compete with. Conference is going to be so exciting racing with my new team. I’m looking forward to being in that high adrenalin environment because that’s where racing is the most fun. At the meet I’m hoping to swim all best times and help my women’s team to another conference title!

Alli Crenshaw (Florida Southern College)
What I love most about swimming in the SSC is the atmosphere. First of all, we get the opportunity to train and compete outdoors year round. The SSC is large enough that we are pushed to reach our full potential while still providing a smaller environment where you can excel and enjoy personal training.

We train so hard all season so as conference and national approach it is nice to start tapering our training. Getting more rest and starting to think about our races mentally is huge. Our team really comes together during this time and I love the encouragement we give each other. It is nice to feed off everyone’s excitement during the championship part of our season.

I really want to see everyone swim well and hit their personal best times. Just to go out there and do my best is what I want to do. If that includes winning another title, that would be the icing on the cake!

(Alli won the 1000 free at nationals in 2013 and 2014 and the 1650 free in 2013)

Thiago Sickert (Nova Southeastern)
My favorite part about swimming for our conference is that there are many strong teams present and it creates a good competing atmosphere. As conference and nationals approach, I’m looking forward to the experiences I will have that will help me when I get to my national meets and Olympic trials. At the end of the season, I hope to win all of my events at both conference and Nationals.

Chandler Armistead (Rollins)
My favorite thing about our conference is its competitiveness. In just the four years I have competed in SSC it has evolved in the level of talent and it will only continue.

I’m looking forward to the results of “hell week”(spring training starts jan.2). We had some great swims at the Nova Invite but I know we will see even more improvement at conference. In the pool I need to take advantage of my last semester competing and outside of the pool I can’t wait to graduate next semester. Coach Morris has always been very understanding when it comes to academics and as far as the swimming part goes he has promised the hardest hell week yet so I look forward to returning this week.

Nir Barnea (Florida Institute of Technology)
My favorite part about our conference is dual meets. I like visiting other campuses, knowing that a sunny outdoor pool is waiting for me.My main goal this is year is to get to Nationals in 2 different events. In academics, I would like to finish the year with a GPA above 3.2.

Luis Rojas (Florida Southern College)
My favorite part about swimming for SSC is being part of a conference that truly represents what the entity of a sport is. It is a conference that that highly values competitiveness and fair game while still remaining respectful and friendly to the other teams. I am proud of being part of one of the fastest conference for division 2 and one of the closest ones. I one of my favorite moments in my college swimming career was in my sophomore year at nationals when all the

SSC swimmers got together to perform the loudest cheer in the competition and root for SSC swimmers, no matter their team.

I’m looking forward to defending the conference title and at least remain as national runner-ups as a team. I also look forward to winning a national title in individual and/or relay events. As my last conference championship and national championship approach, I want to be able perform personal bests and exit through the Big Door with pride.

Outside the pool, I look forward to graduating from school and starting a new chapter in my life. I look forward to see my teammates perform at their best because their success is also my success.

As a senior, I want to be able to look back and be proud of what I’ve done in these four years of swimming. I want to know after all sacrifices I was able to bring pride and honor to my school and my family. I look forward on closing one of the best chapters of my life which end up by graduating from school and graduating as a swimmer at the end of this upcoming semester.

Emma Walhstrom (Nova Southeastern)
My favorite part about swimming in this conference is that the standard is very high and that we have some of the best teams in our conference. The competition is really hard and it keeps me motivated.

I’m looking forward to swimming best times and being at the top in both conference and nationals. I want to grow as a swimmer, teammate and person this season.

I’d love to win a medal at nationals. My goal is an A final and if I get that far, anything can happen!

Matheus Assisi (Saint Leo)
My favorite part about swimming for SSC would probably be the location because I like Florida’s weather. Another thing would be how competitive the conference is. We have a lot of fast teams and that’s good motivation.

I am looking forward to tapering and swimming fast as conference and nationals approach. I like racing and, to me, that’s the fun part of swimming and we get to do a lot of racing in that time period.

I want to break my personal records and be able to swim competitively at nationals. And out of the pool I want to try and keep my GPA above a 3.5 and just have fun.

(Matheus came in 5th in the 100 fly at nationals in 2014)

Notify of

Welcome to our community. We invite you to join our discussion. Our community guidelines are simple: be respectful and constructive, keep on topic, and support your fellow commenters. Commenting signifies that you agree to our Terms of Use

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x