Swimming to State

Ready+to+dive%2C+senior+Sean+Cookson+prepares+to+race.+%22Honestly%2C+it%27s+ironic%2C%22+Cookson+said.+%22Eight+years+of+grinding%2C+all+for+a+race+that+won%27t+even+last+five+minutes.%22
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Swimming to State

Ready to dive, senior Sean Cookson prepares to race.

Ready to dive, senior Sean Cookson prepares to race. "Honestly, it's ironic," Cookson said. "Eight years of grinding, all for a race that won't even last five minutes."

Ashley Poulson

Ready to dive, senior Sean Cookson prepares to race. "Honestly, it's ironic," Cookson said. "Eight years of grinding, all for a race that won't even last five minutes."

Ashley Poulson

Ashley Poulson

Ready to dive, senior Sean Cookson prepares to race. "Honestly, it's ironic," Cookson said. "Eight years of grinding, all for a race that won't even last five minutes."

Jalen Gomez, Reporter

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After a third place overall finish at Regionals on Feb. 2, the swim team is advancing to the state round. 

“Honestly, I don’t know what to expect for State,” girls senior swim captain, Bella Zapata said. “We all did so well at this past meet, there was a record broken, and we all swam really fast.”

One thing that has contributed to the team’s success is the addition of their new head coach, Josh Geisinger. Geisinger is a hometown coach who grew up in Austin and attended the University of Texas. He was a manager for UT’s swim team for four years, and was a part of the 2010 Men’s National Championship team. 

“I’ve been involved in the swimming community for 15 to 20 years now, essentially my whole life,” Geisinger said. “I moved up to Cedar Park three years ago to coach my club team, but it was always a goal of mine to be a part of the community here, working up from the development teams to the club teams, and now to the high school teams.”

According to Zapata, Geisinger has been helping the program for a while now, even when he wasn’t coaching the squad.

“He gave us sets and practices,” Zapata said. “He wants to build a tradition and a future for our team, which no coach has ever done for us before.”

Now that he’s able to help full time, Toledo said that Geisinger has been assisting the swimmers as much as possible. 

“He’s definitely just been around more,” senior captain Dominic Toledo said. “He has made us work harder than we have in the past few years, and he’s helping us be the best swimmers we can be, and the best student-athletes we can be. So he’s always helping us at the pool, and at the school. We just need to talk to him, and we can rely on him for anything.”

From the occasional team spa day to more focus on the team, Geisinger is trying to build a new culture for the team.  

“We’re including the underclassmen more, and we’ve done more drills together,” Zapata said. “We’ve done spa days together, with the guys too, and we’ve just gone out of the box for finding ways to get to know each other.”

Geisinger said that he’s noticed that the team has been gaining that chemistry with each other over the course of the season, and it has been a noticeable change.  

“I think we’ve been working on that all year,” Geisinger said. “I’ve really seen them start to click last week before districts at Tomball, and even at districts, [they were not doing it] for themselves, but for the team. We use the phrase ‘take care of yourself, and take care of each other’. If you take care of each other, then you will be taking care of yourself.”

Geisinger said he aims to help the swimmers shift their focus from not performing for themselves, but as a team.

“The conversations we’ve been having are centered on the team and how we help each other go fast,” Geisinger said. “The way teams win at regionals is that they need a lot of people to go fast, and so our business going in this meet is every individual on our team as a representative of Cedar Park to perform to the best of their ability and swim faster than they ever have before.”

Swim is taking on the state round at the University of Texas in the Lee and Joe Jamail Swim Center on Feb. 15 and 16.