By Jeff Harrison
Midwest City Beacon
The Mid-Del swimmers capped their summer workouts last week with their annual relay race against Del City firefighters at Eagle Harbor Aquatic Center. The high school swimmers beat the firefighters 4-1 in a series of five 100-yard freestyle relays.
“This is a lot of fun and it’s a good way to end the summer,” said Helen Hammond, a Carl Albert swimmer.
The Mid-Del swimmers practice throughout the summer at the Del City outdoor pool, which is located behind the community center and fire station. A big part of the summer workouts is helping younger swimmers adapt to high school swimming. The race with the firefighters gives them a taste of competition.
“I like that gives the new kids practice for racing,” said Everett Ryan, a Carl Albert swimmer. “It’s a race but not a lot of stress to it.”
Last year, firefighters presented swimmers with challenge coins. They said they wanted to give the team their “first medals” of the season.
“They ended up doing just that because we won two events at state,” said Mid-Del swim coach Josh Norman.
Del City Fire Chief Brandon Pursell said they always enjoy the competition and comradery.
“It’s always good for our guys to get out and interact with student athletes,” Pursell said. “Last year, we beat them in the first relay and three of those guys are injured right now so we had some guys step up.”
Pursell said his crew aren’t big swimmers.
“We have guys that do cross fit and weightlifting and stuff like that, but swimming is a whole different beast,” Pursell said.
Norman said he looks forward to continuing the tradition in the future.
“The firefighters are good for the kids, and I hope the kids are good for them,” he said. “It’s definitely the season capper that they all look forward to.”