For now, superstars are missing from the powerhouse Andover girls swimming team, which has won the last four Division 1 state titles, but quality standouts remain.
Foremost this year is Soojin Kim, a senior captain who leads the Golden Warriors in points and has qualified for the Division 1 state meet in all eight individual events.
Kim, who also swims for Crimson Aquatics, placed sixth last fall at the Division 1 state meet in the 100 freestyle, with three of the five swimmers in front of her from Andover. She also was the leadoff leg on the 200 freestyle relay team that came in second.
“She’s having a great season and her energy and personality do so much for the team,” said Andover coach Marilyn Fitzgerald.
With the spotlight on her much brighter this year, we went Around the Horn with Kim to find out about the pressure of being an Andover swimmer, her Korean background and her passion for the sport.
What kind of expectations do you have for yourself and the team after losing so many stars from last year’s team?
“I wanted me and the other three captains to mold the team so that we’re as strong as we can be. For me, I just want to perform better than I did last year.”
Do you feel pressure being in a program with such a rich tradition?
“Absolutely. The target is always on our back, but I think it adds good pressure and motivates us.”
When did you start swimming and why?
“I started when I was 5 years-old. My older sister (Monica) was a swimmer. We have a swimming family.”
What’s your family background?
“I’m Korean. I was born in this country, but my parents were born in Korea. They’re divorced and my mother lives back in Korea. I was legally adopted by my aunt.”