Beginning on the first day of practice, York Suburban's Matt Peters knew what he wanted to accomplish this swimming season.
"My goal this whole year was to be a district champion at the end of the year," Peters said during practice Wednesday. "I've worked very hard for it, and I'm excited to see where it goes."
Peters, a sophomore, is seeded second in the 200-yard individual medley and third in the 100-yard breaststroke for the District 3 Class 2-A Boys' Championships, which will take place Friday and Saturday at Cumberland Valley High School. Peters is also part of two Trojans' relay teams.
The sophomore is more confident this year than he was last year entering the district meet.
"Last year, I went in already defeated," he said. "It was like, 'oh, man I'm swimming against someone faster than me.'"
This year, Peters is confident he can compete for the gold medal.
"One big thing, I had a growth spurt and shot up four inches (he's now six feet tall), and I gained 30 pounds in muscle mass. I've gotten a lot stronger," he said.
Hoping for team title: While Peters is excited about his individual events, he and his teammates also have their eyes on the team prize. The Trojans won the district team crown last year.
"It's definitely been a goal this whole season," he said. "I have amazing training partners, and without them, we would not be the same. Coach B (Craig Brennan) knows how hard to push us in practice and we know how to swim fast when we need to do that."
In addition to Peters' two top-three seeds, the Trojans' Aidan Fryar is seeded third in the 50 freestyle and Suburban's 400 freestyle relay team holds the No. 3 seed.
"We have nine swimmers back, and seven competed at districts," Brennan said. "That's a good thing. Every year is an opportunity for someone to step up."
Brennan thinks there are a number of teams, including his own, that have the potential to win the championship.
"Our district is extremely competitive," he said. "There's Bishop McDevitt, Schuylkill Valley, Trinity, Getttysburg, Susquehanock, Dover. There are lot of good teams and swimmers in our district, and getting out of our district is not easy."
Other seeded swimmers from York-Adams League: Speaking of Gettysburg, the Warriors' Jared Herr returns to bid for second straight titles in the 200 freestyle and 500 freestyle. He owns the top seed in the 500 and the third-seeded spot in the 200.
In the girls' 2-A meet, Susquehannock's Katlyn Baer is seeded second in the 200 freestyle and Gettysburg's Morgan Newell is seeded second in the 100 butterfly and third in the 100 freestyle.
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.