Making the Cut: Swimming with the Thunderhawks

Nick Dove in the Pool without the use of Flippers

“Hey Northland in this edition of ‘Making the Cut’ I’m at Grand Rapids High School with the Thunderhawks swim team. I’m joined by coach Casey. Coach, what is it going to take for me to make your team?”

“Well one thing that you’re going to have to do is you’re going to have to learn how to swim. That’s always the first thing in swimming. You have to be able to swim. Second, we always based our program on physical, but more mental and emotional toughness,” said coach Casey.

“We want you to be tough. The girls as well as our boys team pride themselves on being mentally tough and there’s times when I try to back off on them in yards, they don’t want that to happen. They push me to be a better coach,” Casey added.

“So hard how are you going to push me today and what are we going to be doing?”

“Well we are in the heaviest yardage of our season, we’re going 7 thousand yard workouts. Roughly more than 4 miles a day. We’re towards the end of our workouts now, but you’re still going to get about a mile of swimming in and we’ll see how you do,” coach Casey said.

“Alright coach Casey. Guys, I’m going to jump in the pool and see if I can make the cut for the Grand Rapids Thunderhawks.”

“Good luck.”

“3, 2, 1, go! 132.”

“Maddie, you’re a lifeguard, aren’t you? Go out and get him. Okay, let’s have a little fun with it. Nick, we have some lifeguards here, do you need help?”

“I think I was in a little over my head, literally on this one guys. I think I already know the answer to if I made the cut, pretty sure I didn’t, but I guess we’ll have to go find out, right.”

“Hey Northland, back here at the pool with the Grand Rapids Thunderhawks swimming team. I’m joined by coach Casey and senior captain Maddie. Maddie, we’ll start with you, what did I look like in the pool and how did I do?”

“For a non–swimmer, you looked like you were hanging in there,” said senior captain Madison Bernard.

“Coach, how about from your perspective, what did you see that I was alright and what can I improve on?”

“Well first off, Maddie is a really nice person and you have potential. You have a lot of potential. You have a lot that needs to be worked on. Will he make the team?” said coach Casey.

“This is the honesty part coach, don’t hold back. Lay it on me.”

“Nick, will need to probably start in our minnows program at the YMCA before we get him going. We’ve never cut anybody from the team, but there’s always a first time,” coach Casey said.

“Coach, Maddie thanks for letting me swim with you guys for a little while. It was a lot of fun and good luck the rest of the season. Guys, didn’t make the cut for the Grand Rapids Thunderhawks, but you know what that’s probably for the best. We’ll see you next time here on making the cut.”

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