CHS swim program building

Clovis junior Laura Pyeatt swims laps during practice Friday at the Play Inc. pool. The swim team travels to Hobbs today for a meet. (CNJ staff photo: Eric Kluth)

By Jesse Wolfersberger: CNJ staff writer

For most people, Tuesdays are just another day of the week. For the Clovis High swim team, they are something completely different — terrible Tuesdays.

Every Tuesday the Wildcats have their toughest practice of the week, pushing their personal best times again and again.

Second-year coach Vincent DeMaio said terrible Tuesdays are just one day of the team’s steep training schedule.

“Our program is very specific day to day,” he said. “Each day has a very specific purpose. Tuesdays are when we do our lactic threshold and aerobic threshold training.”

Sophomore Miles Ware explains what that means in layman’s terms.

“A terrible Tuesday is just sprints, one right after the other,” Ware said. “It’s really grueling, but once you’re done with it, you’re like, ‘Wow, I really accomplished something today.’”

Two meets into the season, the Clovis swim team is making strokes toward becoming one of the state’s premier programs.

“Last year was the first year we had a serious, competitive program, and they did extremely well.” DeMaio said. “We went from having no state qualifiers to taking eight kids to state last year. We had a good year.”

DeMaio said this year’s squad looks even better.

“This year’s team has huge potential to be a very good team,” he said. “We’ve got the chance to send a lot of kids to state. Last year we swam five events. This year we could swim as many as 11.”

Last year’s team was made up of 13 girls. This year’s has 22 girls and four boys.

Senior Alyssa Pyeatt said having boys on the team is fun.

“I like it, they add to the team, they’re funny,” Pyeatt said. “It was fun (last year) because it was just a bunch of girls who could just bond and have fun together. But now it’s different because… there are guys. Next question.”

DeMaio said Pyeatt, Victora Erdmann, Amber Espinoza and Evie Fisher are the core of this year’s team.

The Cats practice at the Play Inc. pool, but swim all of their meets on the road.

Erdmann said the schedule is tough, but it makes the team better.

“It’s kinda hard because we’re always traveling,” Erdmann said. “But it’s nice because it’s kind of like training in other pools, you have to learn to adapt to the different temperatures of the pools.”

Ware said training for swimming is different than it is for any other sport.

“There is really no sport that you can compare swimming’s workload to,” Ware said. “You use every single muscle in your body when you swim. In any other sport you have a specific set of muscles you use. Whenever you’re swimming, every muscle, every fiber, every bone in your body is doing something… it’s a different kind of fit for sure.”

Ware said the training is grueling, but it is a labor of love.
“I do it because I love swimming,” Ware said. “I’ve always been a fish in the water. It’s a fun challenge.”

CHS schedule
December
3 — at Hobbs Invitational, 9 a.m.; 10 — at Santa Fe Invitational, 9 a.m.
January
7 — at Lubbock Invitational, 11 a.m.; 14 — at Albuquerque Academy Invitational, 11 a.m.; 21 — at Artesia Invitational, 10 a.m.; 27-28 — at Santa Fe Prep meet, TBA.
February
4 — at Carlsbad Invitational, 10 a.m.; 17-18 — state meet at Albuquerque Academy, TBA.
Note: All Times MST.