One Lap Left For Nick Agnello

Nick Agnello has one final goal to be accomplished in his senior season.

Nick Agnello

Nick Agnello has one final goal to be accomplished in his senior season.

Dominic Comfort, Guest Writer

“I’ve been doing this for four years, and to know that it’s all ending soon, that it will be the last time I swim with those guys is crazy,” says senior swim-team captain Nick Agnello, as he looks ahead to his final few swim meets. Agnello, a four-year swimmer at LCN, has been on the clock for his final season. Ever since his sophomore year, Agnello has had his sights set on competing at the Swim & Dive Macomb county meet. The time Agnello needs to beat to qualify for the county meet in the 500 yard freestyle is 5:49. “Last year I was really close. It was frustrating because two weeks after the county meet I closed my season swimming the 500 yards in 5:47, and if I had swam that just two weeks earlier, I would have qualified.”

The 2019-2020 season has been a different story for Agnello, who opened up his season feeling rusty, and struggling to break 6:00 in the 500 yard freestyle. “I was doubting whether or not I had it in me to swim a personal best in the 500 (yards) this year.”

With doubts in his mind about where he was at physically, Agnello decided to shift his focus on just enjoying his final season of swim. However, during the dual meet between LCN and Utica on January 16th, Agnello shocked himself and his teammates by swimming 5:42 and finally qualifying for the county swim meet. In the same meet, Agnello also qualified in the 50 yard freestyle. “It felt like it was the greatest moment of my season. I surprised myself qualifying for two events in one night. I’ve been fighting to swim at the county meet since my sophomore year, and it’s been my top goal to qualify ever since I found out I was getting closer and closer. After what happened last year, to finally make that goal this year and make two events in one night, I was happy.”

Agnello, who will now join his teammates at the Macomb county swim and dive championships on February 8th, shared how much swimming for the LCN team means to him. “Swimming on the LCN team is one of my best memories in high school, even though it’s only three or four months out of the year, those are probably the best months of my year and I enjoy it while I’m at it.”

During his junior season, Agnello received the Hard Hat Scholarship from his swim coach Mike Owensby, a scholarship awarded to an athlete on the swim & dive team at the end of every season, which grants them money to put towards improving their swim performance. Last year, the scholarship allowed Agnello to attend a swim camp for four days at Oakland University. “The swim camp helped me out and gave me some useful techniques for my final year in high school… When I received the award I was surprised and shocked, I didn’t even know what the award was and I was very glad to have received it.”

Agnello’s teammates have been very supportive of him. Varsity swimmer Jarrett Geddes (’21) commented on what it’s like training with Agnello and being on the team with him. “Nick is a very motivated swimmer that is always focused on scoring points for the team. This is my third year swimming with him, and I am so proud of him for qualifying for the county meet for his first time. As the season goes on this year and he gains more confidence, his role as the team captain becomes more noticeable. His leadership skills have improved immensely.”

Agnello, who also excels with his studies, shared some advice he would like to pass down to younger members on the team. “People say homework comes first, which it does, but you have to find the right balance with completing all your work and supporting your team at the same time.”

Agnello is very involved around the school with being in AP classes, student council, link-crew leadership, and grueling athletic practices all season long. Agnello, on his personal motivation  to balance all his activities, said, “Good planning keeps me motivated, I have to plan my day out throughout the morning and as the day goes on to make sure I get all of my homework done and everything Is in line.”

While Agnello won’t be swimming in college, he does have future goals he will aim to achieve. “I’ll be going to the University of Toledo in fall of 2020 to major in mechanical engineering. My goals for college are to meet new people who have the same interests as me, and have fun while I’m at it… my overall life goals have always been to make it through high school and college, and just live a good life.”

The number one thing Agnello will take away from his time at LCN will be his time on the swim team. “My bond with the team-mates and the meets and practices I share with them, as well as the chance I have to swim at the county meet with them is something I will remember.”

Agnellos’s swim career may be winding down, but he doesn’t plan on leaving it behind anytime soon. “ I will look back on all the days of practice and it will seem weird at first to go a full year with no swim practice, but once I’m in college I will stop by whenever I’m back in Michigan to see the team.”

While those are Agnello’s plans for the future, he remains focused on a single date- February 8th. With the county meet fast approaching, Agnello will hope to continue to bring down his time in the 500 yards to get the best possible seed for counties, since bringing his time down to 5:39 at a dual meet between LCN and Anchor Bay on January 21st.  Agnello’s final swim meet will be an invitational meet on March 3rd. With his future planned out, and most of his high school journey in the books, Agnello plans to swim the best he can at the county meet. “I’m going to try my hardest to dump it all out… and when things get rough, keep calm and swim on.”