Fort Mill Times

Summer Splash in Fort Mill

Sibling members of the Tega Cay Breakers, which total 135 of the 220 swimmers, gather for a photo at the Tega Cay Beach and Swim Center. Tega Cay has the largest team in the Metrolina Swim Leagues, thus has the largest number of sibling combonations in the league.
Sibling members of the Tega Cay Breakers, which total 135 of the 220 swimmers, gather for a photo at the Tega Cay Beach and Swim Center. Tega Cay has the largest team in the Metrolina Swim Leagues, thus has the largest number of sibling combonations in the league.

Keeping up with what your children are during the summer is enough to keep any parent busy.

But with four local team teams -- Tega Cay, Baxter, Leroy Springs and Springfield -- all being in the Metrolina Swim League, parents are a lot more apt to know where their kids are.

Having siblings swimming together on the same team is beneficial, parents and coaches say.

"It's wonderful," said Cindy Van Buskirk, Tega Cay Breakers coach. "I have three that swim. It's a pretty neat thing."

Tega Cay is the largest of the four teams and the biggest in the league. Of their 220 swimmers, there are 135 sibling combinations on the team.

"It helps out the families a lot," Buskirk said. "In this day and age, where families are going six ways to Sunday, it's good to know where everybody is."

Buskirk said having siblings on the same team helps with the older ones looking out for the younger ones and gives them a chance to cheer each other on.

Even the smaller teams in the league like Leroy Springs and Springfield are made up of several families. Leroy Springs has 72 swimmers on its roster, 33 or which are siblings. Springfield has 47 swimmers on its roster, 37 of them are related. One family, the Wellivers, has four children swimming.

But it's understandable for team like Springfield, which is new this year, and Baxter to have a number of family swimmers, considering they draw mostly from those two communities, where bigger teams like Tega Cay draw from the entire city.

For the Baxter Barracudas team of 121 swimmers, 81 of them are siblings.

"The whole family gets involved," said Elena Bowen, Baxter Barracudas coach. "They like to compete and beat each other, but they are very helpful to each other, too. The older siblings reach out to the young ones."

Parent Anita Barradale, having all three of her kids -- Morgan, 13; Will, 10; and Elise, 5 -- swimming for Baxter helps tremendously.

"With school getting out, its nice to have something to do and keep them in shape," she said. "The meets are so much fun."

Barradale said she feels for families who have to chart their children around to different practices during the summer.

"Having a one sport family is essential," she said. "It makes life good."

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