Madras swimming is diving headfirst into new season
The Madras swim teams bring back three student-athletes who qualified for state last season.
Colby Anderson, Julian Hollingshead and Emma Shierk highlight a strong Madras team that will be looking to hang a banner in the Madras Aquatic Center this winter season.
That is not necessarily the ultimate goal for the team, though, according to head coach Scott Jividen. A three-sport coach at Madras High School, Jividen believes in a holistic approach to working with his athletes.
"The lessons are for everyday life, not just in the pool," said Jividen during one of the team's first practices.
That said, a trio of Madras swimmers are applying those lessons in the pool in remarkable fashion.
During the spring season, there were no officially sanctioned state championships for swimming. However, a state showcase event was held on June 30, which served as the unofficial title meet.
At that meet, Colby Anderson won both the 100-meter butterfly and 200-meter medley races, earning his spot in the annals of MHS history.
His teammate, Julian Hollingshead, placed second in each of the 50-meter freestyle and 100-meter freestyle races. Hollingshead, now a senior, has set a goal for himself to join Anderson as a state champion.
In a cruel stroke of bad luck, Emma Shierk was unable to race in the event after dislocating her kneecap.
"I was so excited, because I finally did it. I finally qualified as an individual," recalled Shierk, now a senior. "This is my re-do year."
Like Hollingshead, Shierk is a fan of the short races, noting that her favorite is the 100-meter backstroke.
"I feel so free," Shierk said. "I love doing sprints."
As the team prepares for a new season — one which will result in an official state championship — ongoing shortages of bus drivers sent Jividen and athletic director Daniel Barendse into action.
Jividen just so happens to be a certified bus driver, meaning the White Buffalo head coach will double as the team's chauffeur on road trips. To lessen the burden on himself, Jividen also worked with Barendse and other schools in Central Oregon to schedule nearby meets.
According to a tentative schedule provided by coach Jividen, the Madras swim teams will open the season with three consecutive trips to the Cascade Swim Center in Redmond. The first meet is scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 2, with a 6:15 p.m start time. The other two meets will take place on Dec. 11 and Jan. 8, though times are still to be determined.
The first home meet of the season is slated for Wednesday, Jan. 12. The meet will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Madras Aquatic Center.
The Buffs then make two trips to Bend for meets at the Juniper Swim Center on consecutive Fridays. The meets will be held on Jan. 14 and Jan. 21, but times have not been finalized.
Two more warm-up meets are scheduled to take place at the MAC on Wednesday, Jan. 26 and Saturday, Jan. 29. The last race before districts will be held on Saturday, Feb. 5, at Lewis & Clark College.
Madras will have some home-pool advantage when districts roll around, as the 4A/3A/2A/1A Special District 2 Championships will be held at the MAC. The event will be held Feb. 11-12.
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