On Saturday, Feb. 1, the atmosphere at Harvey Pool at the Baker Ferguson Fitness Center was bittersweet as the class of 2020 competed in their last home meet for Whitman College.
Head coach Jenn Blomme of the men’s and women’s swim teams recounted her time with her current seniors.
“I am so humbled to see the growth that these seniors have made over four years,” Blomme said. “Every person’s four-year journey is their own, but these seniors have all experienced so much personal growth.”
Blomme went on to express her pride in the senior class and how privileged and honored she feels for getting the chance to coach them.
Blomme also described the size of the team, saying that the underclassmen outnumber the upperclassmen. However, despite the imbalance in class sizes, she expressed her optimism for the future of her team.
“A college team is always growing and evolving,” Blomme said. “Our team is better off now than it was four years ago because of the impact made by our senior class.”
Jessica Luong, a senior on the women’s team, said some parting words to her fellow teammates, referring to an inside joke shared among her team.
“Make it a goal to have fun every day and always vote for KBBQ for dinner,“ Luong said.
Senior Fisher Munro also shared a word of advice that extends beyond the swim team and to everyday life, telling his younger teammates not to be too sure of anything and that it is okay to be wrong.
“Question your assumptions and get help to identify what those assumptions are to begin with,” Munro said.
As both seniors recounted their years on the swim team, Luong and Munroe recall their favorite memories of winning multiple meets and even a championship.
“A few of my favorite memories include both teams winning the conference in my first year, story time with Jenn, finally getting a water bottle filler at the pool [and] team cheers on Ankeny,” Luong said.
While Luong has a number of favorite memories, winning the conference is the one memory has resonated with Munro the most since joining the swim team his first year at Whitman.
Along with the lasting memories, Luong and Munro were both left with life experiences they’ll never forget.
“Something I have gained is brothers and sisters that laugh, cry and fight in the trenches with me,” Luong said.
Their coach Jenn Blomme also left the senior class as a whole with some words.
“Your time swimming at Whitman will mean more than anything that happens in the final days of your season or at any particular meet,” Blomme said. “Your connection to this team and the community you created here doesn’t end.”