FAIRBANKS-The last time the Nanooks were in the pool was against Division one Loyola Marymount back on Nov. 2. It's been a little over a month but a lot has changed. Alaska is ranked 19th in the country with 15 top 25 national times in 13 different events.
This weekend they head to Federal Way, Wash for the Husky Invitational. Last year they placed seventh. One of the big things for the Nanooks this year is their relay teams. In the 200 medley relay team for instance, junior Margot and freshman Victoria Adams, senior Bente Heller and sophomore Eileen Audette are ranked fifth in the country with a 1:47.7 time.
"It's kind of intimidating but it's also kind of exciting because it's like we're ranked number one going into it," Audette said. Everyone's like 'oh that team from Alaska.' They really don't know who we are but we're ranked number one so it's exciting."
"I think the relays are going to be the more exciting events.," Adams said. "We're ranked top three in all of them for our A relays and that's my favorite event is the relays. It's pretty exciting."
Head coach Scott Lemley is more proud of where his swimmers hail from.
"This weekend three quarters of our medley relay are Alaskans. The two Adams sisters and Eileen and so that's particularly gratifying for me to take a relay that's predominately Alaskan swimmers to a huge meet and be seated first in the 200 medley relay. So we're real excited about that," Lemley said.
Coach Lemley has his team focused on the task at hand and they have to get back in the pool this weekend in order to maintain and improve upon this great start to the season. They also have to keep up.
"If you do the work in the water it shows and they've done the work. From day one it's been a great season and we're really prepared for this meet. We haven't been racing for a month. Every other team in the country has posted some really fast times and they've pushed us out of those top spots so we want to get back in it."