The Mansfield swim team is coming off of a season in which it sent several athletes to the state meet, and coach Matt Bold said with the amount of talent he has returning and with a few people stepping up, the 2015-2016 campaign could be even better.
Mansfield failed to qualify any of its relays for state in 2014-2015, and Bold said that that is one of the major objectives for his squad next season.
“I think that we had one of the best performances we’ve ever had at state as a team,” Bold said. “It was a really good end of the year for us, but we did not have as deep a team as we’ve had in the past, so we were able to get a lot of individuals to state, but no relays, so that is obviously a big goal of ours this next year, is to get some relays back to the state meet.”
Bold said that he has been pleased with the effort his team has put in during the off-season to this point.
“It’s been a pretty good summer,” Bold said. “We’ve divided time pretty evenly between dry land and swimming. We have not done competition, so we’ve mainly focused on training and working on our technique. We’re just trying to get stronger in the off-season.”
In order to keep themselves in competition form, Bold said that many of his swimmers will compete over the summer.
“A lot of them will train in club swimming just to stay in shape, so that when we come back in August, they are ready to go,” Bold said.
Bold said his athletes will sit down in the first couple of weeks of the school year and discuss goals for the season as a team and individually.
The Mansfield coach said that he expects Mike Thibert, Sara McClendon and Lauren Thompson, all state qualifiers from last season, to be among the team leaders this year.
“They have all been to state twice now,” Bold said. “Sara and Lauren are both going to be juniors and Mike’s going to be a senior, and that experience at the top level trickles down to the other kids on our team.”
In order to repeat upon the type of success it has had in recent seasons, it will take one major thing from his athletes.
“It’s just going to take lots of hard work,” Bold said, laughing. “It doesn’t come easy, in Texas especially. And in the DFW region, there are just so many fast swimmers. There are no weak events where you can just sneak in. You’ve got to be on your game and at your very best when it counts.
“If you are trying to get a relay out, you’ve got to have four swimmers who are on top of their games at that exact moment to have a shot.”