Swimming to success


Cathy Edwards

Junior Ava Edwards, and senior Madison Houck in the 2022 Florida High School Swimming & Diving State Championship.

Gabriela Carrioni, Staffer

Sunlake Highschool’s swim team had an excellent season in the 2022-2023 school year. Nine outstanding team members qualified for this year’s Florida High School Swimming & Diving State Championships, including five boys and four girls. Ava Edwards, a junior at Sunlake has been swimming for the team since freshman year. However, she has been swimming competitively for eleven years. Ava says that her favorite thing about swimming for Sunlake is “the friends I’ve made that I get to do this with and the spirit we have as a team.” When asked about her favorite part about the state competition, Ava said that it “is definitely the atmosphere at the meet. While it is very intense, it is also super exciting and rewarding to be able to compete at that level, alongside some of Florida’s best swimmers.” While it can be important for a team to attain success as a whole, the sport is very fixated on individual success. For this reason, a common goal of setting personal records in particular events is shared among members of the team. Ava herself had many personal triumphs. She says, “at states, I was able to get a best time in my 100-yard butterfly, my 200 medley relay was placed 7th, and we earned ourselves medals along with getting to stand on the podium for placing top 8.” This one of many successes achieved by Ava, and the Sunlake swim team as a whole.

Another extraordinary athlete from Sunlake, senior Madison Houck, has been swimming for thirteen years. Madi has had the chance to attend the Florida High School Swimming & Diving State Championships for the past couple of years, due to her incredibly fast times in meets during the season. She swam alongside her 8 other teammates this year hoping to do even better this year than he has in years past. Madi agrees with her fellow teammate Ava in saying that her favorite part about swimming for Sunlake “is the people and spirit” that the team has. She loved swimming in the state championship because she got to “see all the work we put in all season pay off.” This year for states, Madi had a goal of receiving a medal in both of her events. When asked if she was successful in accomplishing her goal for states, she said “I medaled in both of my individual events and helped my relay team earn a medal.” Because of her constant successes and love for the sport, Madi has decided that she wants “to continue swimming in college” and she even said, “I want to go somewhere in Florida so I am close to my family.”