Seniors have one last dual swim meet
Last week was the final summer dual swim meet for Hanover Stingray senior swimmers, Anna Lehr, Sabrina Krotzer, Chris Chambers, Robert Negron, and Jase Smith, but it’s hardly the end of swimming for the five Liberty grads who will continue their swimming careers in college.
“I don’t think any of us are ready to give it up yet,” said Lehr, who swims the medley relay, backstroke, IM, and freestyle. “I needed this [summer] because Liberty ended and I was devastated. And then coming back here, everyone still comes to practice, you still get meets, you still feel the energy. It’s not as hyped as high school, obviously, but just to be with everybody one last time.”
Hanover finished the season with a perfect record, defeating Soleco, 356-229, last Thursday.
“It’s a great group of kids, I’m definitely going to miss them, but they’ve left a pretty significant impact on what we have here,” said Hanover coach Evan Kocon. “For these kids to [swim in college], you don’t get many percentages or ratios like that often. It’s pretty special for them to be able to do that, but that’s all hard work and dedication.”
Lehr will attend Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., Krotzer will attend Susquehanna University, Chambers will stay local at Lehigh University, Negron will attend University of Pittsburgh, and Smith will attend Clarkson University in Potsdam, N.Y.
“It’s probably one of our biggest things after all the years that you swim [but] it’s not going to settle in until I move into my dorm, and then I’m sitting there for 30 minutes with no one to talk to,” Negron laughed. “We even convinced Jase. He wasn’t going to swim in college.”
As Negron, who swims freestyle, IM, butterfly, and the occasional breaststroke, told it, Smith ended up being convinced at a Hooters near Penn State.
“Well, I was sick in the beginning of my senior year, I wasn’t doing well in swimming, and because I wasn’t doing well, I was like, man, I don’t want to do this anymore, but I found my strength at some point, and the guys, I love being around the guys, and they eventually convinced me to swim up at Clarkson, and I was really excited,” said Smith, who swims the backstroke and freestyle. “I visited, and I got to meet their team, and I was like, this is where I need to be.”
The girls are undecided on their majors. The boys are currently decided on aeronautical engineering for Smith, mechanical engineering for Chambers, and physical therapy for Negron.
“It hasn’t hit me yet that we’re actually going to college and that we’re not going to be swimming together again. I still feel like we’re going to end up at Liberty for practice in September, but we’re going to our different colleges,” said Krotzer, who swims fly and backstroke.
“I feel like a lot of us went through senior year without realizing we’re really graduating. Leaving, leaving, leaving, and never going to come back here until tonight,” said Chambers, who swims breaststroke, freestyle, fly, and IM. “I think we’re probably the closest team.”