The student news site of Kingwood Park High School


The student news site of Kingwood Park High School


The student news site of Kingwood Park High School


Marie Wakefield (9)

 What grade are you in? 

I’m a freshman.” 

All right, So how many years have you been doing Swimming? 

“I’ve been doing it my whole life, but I really started to actually show up to practice and actually try in practice when I was in, like, probably fifth or sixth grade.”

So is this your first time doing the state?

“Yeah, it is. So this is exciting”

So how did you do at Region and what did you compete in? 

“I’m pretty proud of my performance at Regionals because I competed in the 200 freestyle, and I was able to win that. I was surprised because I’ve just been dropping, like, so much this season, I’ve dropped about, seven or 8 seconds. And then after that, I swam the 100 butterfly, I did okay in that one. I mean, it was technically my best swim, but I got third. I didn’t make it to State automatically. But they take the next eight fastest times. So I was still able to go to State in that one. And then we have a 200 free relay, which was a fun one. And the 400 relay, I wasn’t even supposed to be in the 400 free relay. I was supposed to be in the 200 medley, but we switched up because the 200 the medley was right before the 200 free. I was going to be dead. And so my coach was like, ‘Hey, do you want to switch?’ 

Can you describe your experience at Region?

“It was so amazing because everybody was there. Everybody was cheering for you. It was so fun. Like, I love my team. We’re a very closeknit team. It was just so much fun. The energy was there. We were all excited and everybody was festive and stuff like that. It was really fun.”

What were your expectations for Region? 

“I was kind of excited, but I was also like nervous. I was also kind of sick, you know, And so I was a little bit apprehensive.”

But so what was your initial reaction when you first found out you were going to State?

Well, okay, so I guess my first thing was the 200 free. I felt like I was dying. And that’s kind of what happens. I went a tenth of a  second slower in my second 100, but I got out and I knew that I won because I like sort of looking around. I didn’t see the person next to me. I kind of looked for my name because they have your name in the place you got. So I looked and I saw number one. I was so happy.”

What are your expectations for State? 

“The hard part is over. I’m just happy I get to swim at State and I may do great, I may not do great, but I’m just so grateful that I get to swim that it doesn’t really matter to me what happens next, because I because I’m going to state.”

This being your first year, what does going to State mean to you?

“When I was really young, I was in one of the slowest groups, you know, slowest people ever. And I never thought in a million years that I could ever like be at the level I am now. So it’s so a lot to think about how far I’ve come in the last few years. It’s like, look at all the hard work that brought me here. So I am honored to swim.”

So what’s been your favorite memory from the season overall?

“Whenever we made it in the 400 free relay because I was swimming it and my friend was swimming with me and I wanted us to go to State together. So I swam and then we won. We were seeded I think sixth or something like that. And we went and we won it. And I was so happy because I was like, ‘We can both go.’ And that was amazing. And, it was a happy conclusion.”

So what has been the hardest part of the season leading up to here?

“It’s got to be a time between getting up at 5:30 and jumping in the freezing pool. The heater broke. It was during the dead of winter. It was so cold. But also with swimming, does come heartbreak. So whenever you don’t do as good as you think you’re going to do. It does hurt because when you think about a race and you’re prepared for it, you think you’ve done everything right, sometimes you do your best but it was not enough.”

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