BM Lady Sharks Hunt For Victory

Amanda O'Brien, Staff Writer

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way many sports run, especially during the sports season last year. This year, the restrictions in place are more lenient due to COVID mandates easing up. The difference between the 2020-2021 sports season can be easily seen, especially in swimming. 

A large difference between this season and last season is the presence of spectators. This year, spectators are allowed at the Bellmore-Merrick Sharks’ meets if they remain masked for the entire meet. This has a huge impact on the swimmers’ attitudes and performance. The team says, “It is much easier to perform better knowing that there is a crowd up there cheering us on.” The cheering from spectators encourages the Sharks to swim faster and compete harder.

Another difference is that the team is able to practice and swim together without any division of the lanes. They said that it is much better to swim all together and keep the connection with the members of the team and be able to have some fun during  practice. Last year, the lanes were split in half and sectioned off by which swimmers swam on their respective side of the pool. It was much harder for the team to preserve their special bond when they were separated every day of practice with less time for team interactions. Without the splits in lanes this year, the team and the new girls are closer than ever. 

Though COVID has not fully disappeared, it is nice to have mandates finally ease and allow athletes to compete after a strange season last year. The presence of spectators and unity of the team are just two of many reasons why the team will dominate even harder this year.