Swim Team Begins Practicing
A newly-formed town swim team has started practicing at the Ave Maria Water Park.
Published on Wednesday, 23 June 2010 15:56
The team has between 30 and 40 swimmers turn out for its practices three days a week, according to Ave Maria University Athletic Director Brian Scanlan, a town resident who organized the team.
The Ave Maria swimmers are participating in the Swim Florida program, which has 11 other branches in southwest Florida, and will begin competing soon in Swim Florida meets. The team is coached by Tom Keer (right) who said he sees great potential in the team.
Mr. Keer coaches another Swim Florida team at Florida Gulf Coast University and also is the swim coach at Golden Gate High School. His daughter, Haley, assists him in coaching the Ave Maria team and he says, "We were both pleasantly surprised about the ability level of the swimmers" in Ave Maria. Although the current team is organized just for the summer, he believes that the large turnout means that "having a year-round program would not be out of the question."
The team's first meet is Tuesday, June 29, at the DeLeon Pool in Fort Myers. Coach Keer says the team will also have weekly meets at Golden Gate and Marco Island before concluding its season Aug. 14 with the league championships at the DeLeon Pool.
Mr. Scanlan said that Ave Maria University also is developing a competitive swim program, and he hopes the Swim Florida team "will help develop swimmers to help the university's swim program in the coming years."
The team practices three days a week -- Wednesday through Friday -- and is open to swimmers of all ages who can swim the length of the main pool at the water park. Mr. Scanlan says the team hopes for more members, and anyone interested can get in touch with him at