GBHS Dive team goes to state.

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Hayden Brown, Sports Editor

   The Gulf Breeze High School swim and dive team had multiple swimmers and divers who qualified to compete at the State competitions. While the team itself did not qualify, two athletes made it to State. The state was on Nov. 4 in Stuart, Fl, which is just north of West Palm Beach. 

   The only swimmer who advanced to the state level on the team was Jillian Beardsley. Beardsley has been a competitive swimmer on the team, despite being only a sophomore. She competed in the 100-fly competition and the 100-backstroke competition. As one of the top eight swimmers in both events in the district, she was a clear frontrunner for the state competition. According to coach Steven Fair, Beardsley is “very positive about her swimming and likes to race,”. 

   The other competitor at the state competition was diver, Emi Goto. As a senior, she has been a dominant force on the team for years. Goto competed in a separate dive competition from Beardsley at State. To qualify, she placed within the top 24 divers at the regional competitions. Goto has been a force to be reckoned with in diving this season, breaking the school’s 11 dive record at the district competitions this year. Not only is Goto a domineering force on the diving board, she is also a strong leader on the team. Coach Fair stated that “Emi will go out of her way to help other divers. She is a great mentor for her fellow teammates. She is very focused when it comes for her to dive.” 

   Overall, this has been a successful season for the swim and dive team. In an individual competition like swim, two athletes qualifying for the State competition from one school is an enormous achievement. Junior, Lexi Montgomery, said that she believed “everyone improved a lot and grew as swimmer and as a team. It was definitely more competitive this year than it has been in years past.” While the team grew in skill, the season was a difficult one. “It was a very tough season with lots of changes,” said Coach Fair. Despite the setbacks, Coach Fair still believes that this season was a successful one. “We have a great administration at the school that helps with learning curves along the way and the freshman heavy team shows lots of promise.”