Sports Previews: A Look into the Lady Stangs’ Upcoming Swim Season


Sam White competes in the record-breaking 200 Medley Relay during the 2014 season.

Kieran Lynch, Swim Correspondent

On November 12, the Lady Mustangs, Manitou High School’s girls’ swim and dive team, will officially start their season. Over the next three months, they will compete in eleven meets, leading up to the state meet on February 12. At this point, the team has 24 girls signed up, a majority of whom are returning from last year’s highly successful season. Until the first day of practice, Coach Roy Chaney says he never knows exactly who will be on the team, but right now he has four new swimmers.

One of the new swimmers is incoming freshman Kaitlyn Cashdollar, who has attended some of the pre-season practices in the last few weeks. “I’m super excited about this new season… I feel like this is going to be a strong year for our team,” she says.

“In my opinion this could be our strongest season yet,” said coach Roy Chaney. In past years, the team has been strong. This year, captains Veronica Morin (12) and Samantha White (12) plan on leading a strong team to victory.

This season is distinguished not only by the number and speed of the swimmers, but also by the addition of new divers. Without divers, it can be very hard to win a swim meet, so those team members are extremely important.

The team’s first goal for the season is to win their league meet this year. Coach Chaney and Morin both believe that the team can accomplish this goal. Another goal for the team is to get a higher place at 4A state than they did last season. Last season, the team placed fifth in the state. Coach Chaney hopes that they can keep their place, if not improve it, at the state meet. Multiple swimmers also expressed their hope of taking third place this year.

While the team as a whole has very clear goals, each swimmer has to set their own individual goals in order to have a successful season. Sydney Dolloff-Holt (9) has high expectations for her performance this season. “I hope to make it to state and make it into a consolation final or a championship final,” she said. Dolloff-Holt has been a member of the Colorado Torpedoes club team for some time, who are also coached by Chaney and based in Manitou.

White said, “My individual goals for the season mainly involve maintainin

g the 200 Medley Relay state title, and possibly adding the 200 Free Relay into the state champion category”.

Emily Dolloff-Holt (11) said, “My goal for the season is to achieve top three ranking in all my events at states.” She has been swimming on Manitou’s team since her freshman year, and was one of the key swimmers in the 200 medley race.

While some swimmers have specific goals, others are focused more on general improvement of their swimming. Kaitlyn Cashdollar’s (10) plan is “To work on events that I enjoy and am best at.”

While the performance of the team is very important to Both Coach Chaney and the swimmers, they all place equal value on the time spent on the team and the positive environment in and out of the water. Morin said, “Our team, unlike many others, is very close and is like a family. It’s amazing being able to share astonishing accomplishments with people that are considered to be family.”

For most of the swimmers, the sport serves two purposes; the first is participating in the sport itself, but the second is being a part of a tight-knit group of girls who really care about each other. “The best thing about being on a swim team is the sense of family. No one knows you like your swimming friends do,” said White.