The Buccaneer Swim Team (BUCS) travelled to Taipei from the 1st to the 4th of November. Eleven teams from all over Asia attended the meet. The BUCS team was comprised of Coach Moodie, Coach Furudera and around 35 swimmers, ranging from 8 to 17 years old. James Hill, Alex Hotta, Kaiya Croy, Kei Takahashi, Junichiro Asano, Naoki Martin, Skyler Pang, Cameron Fenwick were the high school swimmers that attended this trip. This was a great opportunity for them to become familiar with the elementary and middle school swimmers. On the first day, the team went to a public pool to practice before the meet. The high schoolers had the rare opportunity to swim with and take care of the elementary swimmers during practice. They were able to learn what it is like to be a coach, and the elementary swimmers could rely on the older swimmers. Junior swimmer and sports managing editor in the diplomat, Naoki Martin, claims, “Us high school swimmers gained a deeper appreciation for the work that our coaches do on a daily basis coaching all of these young swimmers.”

The swim meet began on the afternoon of November 2nd, and spurred on by Coach Moodie, the team enthusiastically cheered for their teammates during the 400m freestyle. Karl Bodenheimer, Kaiya Croy, and Junichiro Asano represented the BUCS in this race, with everyone placing within top three of their age group. 15 more swimmers competed this day, and the vast majority achieved a best time.

The second day of the meet began with an early warm up at 7:00am, and swimmers were able to get acquainted with swimmers from other teams. The BUCS high school community became especially friendly with swimmers from the hosting team, Taipei American School (TAS). During the meet, the BUCS relay competed against the TAS relay in the 200 freestyle and the 200 medley. BUCS won the 200 free with over a two second lead with an average time of 24.52 seconds per 50m. Unfortunately for the medley relay, freshman James Hill (backstroke), junior Cameron Fenwick (breastroke), sophomore Junichiro Asano (butterfly), and junior Naoki Martin (freestyle) lost to TAS by 0.33 seconds. It was a close race, and the crowd was roaring with excitement throughout the entire race. Other races such as the 50 free and 100 free got the crowd’s attention, with Cameron Fenwick beating both of Kazuki Martin’s (SMIS class of 2017) old meet record. In the 15-18 age group, Cameron got the high point trophy with Junichiro following him in 2nd place and TAS swimmer Kondo Hironori getting 3rd. Another BUCS swimmer, Arina Hill, won 1st place for the 13-14 girl’s age group. The BUCS was 4th overall with only 35 swimmers compared to other teams that had 50 or more swimmers. The BUCS male swimmers had an especially strong showing, with all the high school swimmers receiving a medal in at least one race.

The night finished with a team dinner at a traditional Chinese restaurant, Fangs. Both parents and swimmers were able to enjoy this dinner, and it ended with a spectacle as sophomore Kaiya Croy finished all of the left-over food. The whole team was able to have fun in their own ways and look forward to next year’s swim meet abroad.

Article by Junichiro Asano