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Swimming to the finish line of success

Andrea Vasquez Chinchilla
Racing through the water, junior Kamryn Pender-Cooper competes in a freestyle swim as some of her fellow teammates cheer for her on the sidelines in support of the challenge shes is faced with. The support from her team pushed her to excel in the sport. “It’s a mix of making friends and making memories,” Pender-Cooper said.

Splashing through her competition and breaking records. Junior Kamyrn Pender-Cooper has made her name known throughout Oklahoma swim competitions with her success, but four years ago this wasn’t always the case for Pender-Cooper
“When quarantine hit, my grandparents were really wanting me to get out of the house,” Pender-Cooper said. “So my grandma signed me up for some club swim lessons. I previously swam whenever I was really little.”
High school swim has been a part of Pender-Cooper’s life since her freshman year and currently does butterfly and even competed at state qualifiers doing both butterfly and freestyle. Pender-Cooper has broken and now holds six school records alone this year. Though all her records seem impressive, Pender-Cooper put all her effort into practice to be where she is now.
“Practice consists of a lot of yardage, challenging sets, improving technique, working on anything the coaches need from you to progress,” Pender-Cooper said.
Swim practices at the Bethany YMCA throughout the week and at Lighthouse on Mondays and Thursdays. Swim practices can be physically exhausting. Swimmers have to use their entire body while having to master technique to ensure that they can be the fastest person in the pool. They also have to be in good shape and maintain form and technique because in swim every detail matters and decides who wins and loses in a meet.
Swim impacted Pender-Cooper in a way she never thought. She received multiple college scholarships.
“It impacted me quite a bit,” Pender-Cooper said. “It’s basically my whole life now. I’m going to go to college for it and it’s just going to carry with me the rest of my life.”

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Brenden Adams
Brenden Adams, Staff Writer/Photographer

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