For a couple of swimmers from the Panhandle it could be time to make history.
Swimmers Nicolas Chance and Baileigh Sizemore are on the Lancaster High swim team but attend schools in Indian Land. Chance is a senior at Indian Land High and Sizemore is an eighth-grader at Indian Land Middle. They are two of seven swimmers on the Lancaster High team from Indian Land.
Because the Lancaster County School District has only one swim team – at Lancaster High – students from other Lancaster County high schools can join that team.
Chance and Sizemore both have qualified for several races at the 3A-1A state swim championships Oct. 11 in Columbia. Rory Cunningham, a freshman at Indian Land High, is an alternate for the relay events for Lancaster.
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Lancaster will be competing in the afternoon state finals at the USC Natatorium.
Chance, also a wrestler, has been swimming competitively for the past nine years with the Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center. This is his first year swimming with Lancaster High; he used to attend Ardrey Kell High School just over the state line but is attending Indian Land for his senior year.
Chance will be swimming the 50-yard freestyle and 100-yard backstroke in Columbia.
He says he likes the individuality of swimming. “It’s a fair competition,” he said. “You either beat them or you don’t.”
Lancaster High head coach Midenna Anderson says this year is the best chance for an Indian Land student to capture a state title.
“Nick is an awesome swimmer and great kid,” she said. “Baileigh has dropped time every time she has gotten in the water.”
Sizemore has been swimming competitively since she was 7. She has qualified to swim in the 500-yard freestyle and the 200-medley and 400-free relay events.
Sizemore qualified last year and is in her second year swimming with the Lancaster team. She said she likes the longer events.
“I like the distance and leaving it all in the pool,” she said.
“I don’t like the shorter events at all. If you make a mistake, you always have a chance to make up for it in the distance events.”