Friday Night Laps

Ryan Ehlinger, Staff Writer, Journalism I

It is another Friday at Notre Dame Academy in Green Bay, WI, and that can mean a number of things to students. With homeroom meetings and Triton raps Friday means Spirit Day, a day students are allowed to wear shirts and sweatshirts promoting their favorite NDA clubs and teams.

The hallways are filled with students sporting the jerseys of their favorite football, hockey, lacrosse and basketball players. For many athletes having their numbers paraded around school by adoring fans is a highlight of their sports career. The recognition and admiration of their fellow peers can be enough motivation to make it through even the toughest practices.

Many people have stereotypical sympathy towards the drama, choir or even band students, whose hard work and dedication goes tragically unnoticed. They do it because they love it–that’s what we tell ourselves. We assume a love for the arts and music is enough for them.

There are some students, mostly unknown or unheard of, that receive even less admiration. Few high schools have the funding and the desire to offer every sport to the students, so naturally the less popular ones get tossed aside. On top of being less well known, if that sport requires lots of funding or unusual equipment, most schools simply say forget it.

Among these forgotten sports is swimming. Many high schools assume that if they do not have a pool they can not have a team, so the sport is quickly dismissed. Finding a place to practice and renting much desired pool space can be a big task, and many high schools are not up for the challenge.

For the few lucky swimmers who attend a high school with a team, they get the highly sought-after privilege of representing their school and peers. As for the rest of us, quietly attending practice after school and then heading to the football game will have to do.

Editor’s Note:  Senior Ryan Ehlinger swims for the Green Bay YMCA swim team and plans to continue his swimming career in college.