Friday, July 26, 2013

Maddie Hits Her Stride, Wins One

This is Maddie (goggles in the center) and her age-group girls waiting in a glass-enclosed room for their event.
OK, Pamapa's about to bust one. Maddie not only won her heat this morning at the RVAA City-County Swim Championships at the Salem YMCA, but it looks like she scored for the first time. It couldn't have come at a better time.

Maddie, who could barely swim last year when she joined the Hunting Hills Swim Team, has struggled mightily with her strokes, her stamina, her attention span--all that an eight-year-old can struggle with. But I saw determination on her face this morning as she sat through a technical delay for nearly an hour, waiting to swim for all the marbles.

Mads won her heat in the freestyle, her first win ever.
Her team won the regular-season title, but the Stone Gate team is good (two-time defending champion) and actually had more swimmers registered for this meet.

At this level, the number of swimmers you have is important, especially if, like Maddie, they score for the first time, giving you points you hadn't expected. Mads' other grandpa, Wayne Dickerson, texted me that she had "swam as well as I've ever seen her swim."

It was interesting to watch the restless children, sitting in rows of chairs, clustered in back rooms, standing in the halls, waiting for the meet to start. But when it started, they were like jack-in-the-box kids, springing into action.

So, Mads, I'll consider this a birthday present. Thank you, sweetie. Means a lot to an old man.
Boys stacked in rows of chairs, awaiting their events, delayed by a technical glitch.

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