The Colorado College Lady Tiger’s Swimming and Diving Team has had quite a start to their season. With only one week underway in the 2013-2014 season, the team has already had two of its members named the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference’ (SCAC) Female Swimmer and Diver of the Week. The honors went to sophomore swimmer Olivia Dilorati and sophomore diver Samantha Buxbaum.
The Catalyst caught up with the two athletes to gain insight into what it took for them to get to this point in their athletic careers and what’s still to come after one of the better starts to their swimming and diving seasons.
Q- How does it feel to be named SCAC player of the week?
Samantha: “It feels good. I definitely am starting from a different place than I did last year, as last year was my first year diving ever. It was a little unexpected; I’m still not exactly sure how to feel about it.”
Olivia: “It was a little bit surprising, I honestly didn’t know about it until like a couple days after, so I was really shocked. I didn’t expect it in any way. It definitely is exciting because it’s a good way to start off the season. Hopefully by the end of the season the team will be as successful if not more successful, so we’ll see.”
Q- What are your main goals for the rest of the season?
Samantha: “I think repetition. It’s hard to keep doing the dives you’re scared of and getting less scared of the dives you were initially scared of while trying to improve on those dives.”
Olivia: “This year I’d really like to make it to nationals, hopefully. I really want to do well at champs and hopefully place top 8 like I did last year. I want to make nationals not just individually but as a team. That’s probably my biggest goal—to make it on a relay with my teammates rather than individually.”
Q- If you had to say anything about the competition level in Division III Swimming & Diving, what would it be?
Samantha: “I don’t really dive against other people, it’s always more for myself than anything.”
Olivia: “My experiences in high school were rewarding, but here it’s definitely more of a rewarding experience because I put a lot more time in the weight room, in the pool, and with my teammates. It’s just a different scale of swimming.”
Q- What made you choose swimming/diving?
Samantha: “The reason I dive is to learn more about myself and figure out how to deal with pressure in better ways. It’s also to learn to stay calm in situations that don’t necessarily lend themselves to staying calm.”
Olivia: “I had an amazing high school coach and she inspired me to really focus on [swimming] more, also swimming came to me the most naturally. The other sports I enjoyed and did fine at, but swimming was definitely the area I excelled in the most.”
Q- What is something you can credit your current athletic success to?
Samantha: “My coach… Also when I’m diving, I don’t really think a lot about the overall dive. I think of a tiny little aspect of that dive to help me get through it because the rest is just going to be muscle memory.”
Olivia: “One of my biggest pet peeves ever is not trying. Even if I’m extremely tired or stressed out going into practice, I know that it’s not worthwhile unless I give it my all. I think that overall mentality of just wanting to try hard, not only for myself, but more importantly for my teammates, and my coach is a big reason for my success.”
Nick Youngblood, Guest Writer