Lifted spirits

    Last week freshman swimmer, Mariah Javier, made it to state. Her team rallied around her, and in a moment of pride and camaraderie, lifted her up on their shoulders. What started as a joke, became a moment that showed true team spirit.

    Though telling the team and crowd took a little more effort than necessary. By the time the person calculating scores realized that Javier had enough points, the microphone had gone out. Junior Elizabeth Skelly recounted how everyone found out.

    “There is a certain set amount of points you have to get to go to state, so the person who tallies up the points figured it out and told our coach, and our coach went around, because the microphone broke, and walked over to this really loud girl and said ‘hey, you should yell that Mariah made state’ and that’s how the entire team found out.” said Skelly.

    Javier was told before everyone else on the team, and had a separate perspective on the sequence of events.

    “Our coach, he likes to predict our scores, and so he walked over to the table to get our papers and then he walked over and said ‘What did I tell you?’ about our scores and that’s when he told us,” said Javier “After that, me and Emma were jumping up and down and then towards the end the whole swim team got together and we had a group hug and then they lifted me up and chanted ‘State’.”

    Skelly remembered what turned normal celebration into Javier being lifted up.

    “We were so excited, and it was so cool because Mariah came over to us and we all yelled ‘congrats’ and we were all screaming. And someone was joking, saying ‘let’s throw her up’ and so the whole team got underneath her and lifted her up, and it was amazing,” said Skelly.

    Sophomore Jessica Mckinnis commented on the emotional and physical support she felt the team showed for Javier. 

    “Yeah, it definitely helped Mariah because it showed we were all there for her,” said Mckinnis, “ I was full of joy and very proud because I know she has worked really hard for this.”

    Javier has worked hard for this. She has club practice as well and swims from 3-9pm everyday, which means every week she has 42 hours of practice. This meet was still a challenge for her though.

    “I think it was because I had tough competition, the people from Francis Howell had more people and it kind of encouraged me to work hard that week because I really wanted to get [state].” said Javier

    Despite the difficulty of both the meet and the dives she was doing, getting to state has taken a weight off.

    “I felt relieved, and I felt like the rest of the meet I could just have fun and enjoy it.” said Javier.