Q&A with Girls State Relay Swimmers

Brooke Cotten, News & Feature Editor

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After many months of tiring meets and practices, two girls swim relay teams qualified to swim in the state meet. This was an amazing opportunity for them to prove that their hard work had worked in their favor.
Emily Henson- 12th grade
Q:Which relays made it to state?
A:“The 200 medley relay and the 400 freestyle,” Senior Captain Emily Henson said.
Q:Who swims on those relays with you?
A:“On the 200 medley it’s me, Naomi Lejeune, Caroline Henson, and Brooke Beddingfield. On the 400 freestyle is me, Naomi Lejeune, Caroline Henson, and Audrey Byrd,” Henson said.
Q:Does your team work good together? If so, why?
A:“I think that we work good together because we have all swam together for so long that we know how each other swims which makes it easy to be confident,” Henson said.
Q:How did you get this opportunity to go to state?
A:“By working hard and being confident in ourselves. We swam to second place and qualified for state,” Henson said.
Q:What would you say is your team’s strong suit?
A:“I’d have to say having fun because we have the most fun out of all the teams on deck because we don’t really care what they think about us and just do what we need to do to get ready,” Henson said.
Q:What do you do to prepare for a big meet?
A:“We always have a big pasta party before where we all come together as a team and we fuel our bodies with what we need to succeed,” Henson said.
Q:What is your favorite memory from this years season?
A:“Winning the 100 freestyle was a huge moment for me,” Henson said.
Q:How did you feel after learning that your relay made it to state?
A:“We were so excited! We jumped up and down, screamed, and everyone looked at us like we were crazy but knowing that we made Oak Ridge history was so much fun,” Henson said.
Q:When is state and what will you do to further prepare for it?
A:“State is the 17th and 18th of February and we are having a pasta party the Monday before. We are making door posters for each other for motivation and to spend more time together and become a closer team,” Henson said.
Q:Why is swimming important to you?
A:“It makes a bond between my sister, Caroline, and I that we wouldn’t share if we didn’t participate in the same sport,” Henson said.
Q:What does making state mean to you?
A:“It’s a huge deal senior year because I have been to state all four years now and this year I get to take other people that qualified. My sister being one of them is going to be awesome,” Henson said.
Brooke Beddingfield- 11th grade
Q:What relay do you swim and who else is on it?
A:“I swim the 200 medley with Emily Henson, Naomi Lejeune, and Caroline Henson,” Junior Brooke Beddingfield said.
Q:What do you think is your team’s strong suit?
A:“We are all really close and work to push each other to do our best,” Beddingfield said.
Q:What is your favorite memory from swim this year?
A:“It will probably be going to state,” Beddingfield said.
Q:What makes swimming enticing to you?
A:“All the people and how we are all together, and because it’s a team and an individual sport,” Beddingfield said.
Caroline Henson- 9th grade
Q:What relay do you swim?
A:“I swim in the 400 free and the 200 Medley,” Freshmen Caroline Henson said.
Q:Do you think you all work good together? If so, why?
A:“I think we do because we all want to succeed as a whole and not just individually, so that helps us,” Henson said.
Q:How did you get the opportunity to go to state?
A:“We trained really hard all season and wanted it so badly so we just kind of went for it,” Henson said.
Q:What is your favorite memory of swimming this year?
A:“My favorite memory is being able to swim with my sister, Emily Henson. Our age gap doesn’t allow us to do much together so it was cool to get to swim with her for once,” Henson said.
Q:Who is your biggest inspiration for swimming?
A:“My sister, because despite all of her injuries she has never given up and just keeps swimming because it’s what she wants to be good at,” Henson said.
Q:How did you feel after learning you made state?
A:“I was really shocked because I wasn’t sure that we were going to be able to but I knew that if we were determined enough that we would be able to,” Henson said

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