Urban School swim team ends season on high note, finally has fans for support

The cheering fans were audible from the street as the Urban swim team earned a victory in their last meet of the season. The Blues swam hard against Drew School on May 7 at the Boys and Girls Club in the Haight, mirroring the way that they had trained for the previous few months.

Joe Skiffer, assistant athletic director, rallied fans to come out to support the team via a proud bulletin board post. His efforts were met with a fantastic turnout.

“I went with six other people to support the whole team. It was a lot more exciting than I thought it would be,” said Ariane Goldsmith (’16), a spectator at the meet. “Swimming is the weirdest sport, it’s basically track in the water,” she laughed.

Ella Andrew (’14), who was instrumental in kickstarting the team, said “(w)e’ve improved a lot.” Determination in following-through on the three-year process of forming the swimming program is starting to pay off, she said.

When touching on the team’s success, Andrew said, “(a)ll 18 of us did really well and we are all much stronger competitors than we were last year. By the end of the season, we had really cohesive relay teams.”

Urban’s swim team has had seven meets so far, with mixed results. “Our team is in the BCL (Bay Counties League) for the first time this year,” said Greg Angilly, Urban Athletics director. “At this point we’re just learning to compete, not pushing ourselves crazy hard to win meets.

“Joe and I are really proud of the effort that the team is putting in,” he added.

Fans said they hope that the positive and enthusiastic legacy of Urban swimming will carry on into the coming years, as the new sport becomes an integral part of the athletic culture.