Story and main photo by Terry Jacoby/weloveannarbor.com
Skyline’s standout swimmer Lucas Caswell says this season has been ruled by one quote from the Book of Boba Fett: “Persistence without insight will lead to the same outcome.”
FYI: The Book of Boba Fett follows bounty hunter Boba Fett from The Mandalorian and other Star Wars media as he establishes himself as the new crime lord of Jabba the Hutt’s former territory – yes, I had to look that up.
“This year has been all about optimizing performance and finding insights to better myself,” says Caswell, who has experienced some impressive “outcomes” in his young life. “I have been trying to optimize nutrition, underwater kicks, lifting, hydration and so much more.”
Caswell isn’t settling for second best – or first best. His Skyline team won the Division 2 State Title last year and despite being only a sophomore, he played a major role in the team’s success. So, let’s splash off from there.
“Last year was good,” Caswell says. “I ended up with personal best times in both my individual events at states. I received all-state and all-conference for both relays and the 100 butterfly.”
Caswell placed sixth in the 100 butterfly in 50.95 seconds and went 50.89 prelims. He placed 11th in the 200 individual medley in 1:55.65. He also the butterfly leg on the 200 medley relay that placed third in 1:33.94 and was the second leg of the 400 free relay that won in 3:05.63. That same relay team went 3:04.36 at the SEC Red Championships to earn All-American status.
Winning a state title is the ultimate goal but Caswell admits it wasn’t easy – both in and out of the water.
“It was pretty nerve-racking, especially how close it was for most of the meet,” he says. “I definitely felt the pressure to perform and get as many points for the team, but it was also really great because I got to see all my hard work and all the hard work of my teammates pay off. It felt so great to know our team was able to reach what we all knew we could do.”
This year’s team is off to another amazing start as the Eagles look to defend their title with a much younger team in the water. “We graduated a lot of great swimmers and leaders last year but I think this year’s team is just as strong in leadership, passion, work ethic, and spirit,” says Caswell. “I think the team is pretty close, especially the guys who were on the state team last year. We push each other to be better in so many aspects, not just in the pool.”
Caswell says he is trying to be one of the team’s leaders by setting an example for everyone around him. “I think a lot of people are following my example,” he says. “It’s just as motivating to have people chase as it is to chase people, and it definitely keeps me on my toes.”
His personal goals for this season include a top-three finish in the 100 butterfly along with a winter junior national cut. He also is looking to get All-State again in the 200 medley and is focused on bringing down his 200 IM and 100 free times.
As for the team?
“I think the team is looking to place in the top four at states and get on the podium in a couple of relays,” he says. “I believe that being vocal about my goals is key for them to happen.”
Caswell first got interested in swimming through swim lessons and then WISC at Chippewa in the summer of 2013. He was encouraged to join Club Wolverine (CW) by some of the other swimmers at Chippewa so he could keep swimming year-round. And he’s been swimming ever since.
“I liked that swimming was super fun and the coaches were awesome,” he said. “I also enjoyed that I was able to see myself improve and that tangible, quantitative improvement is rare to find in other sports.”
Skyline Coach Mo-Jo Murrett has coached some excellent swimmers and people over the years and Caswell certainly belongs in that pool of talented and hard-working student-athletes. “I am so impressed by Lucas’ work ethic and the energy that he brings to the pool every day,” she says. “He is truly a student of the sport. It’s fun to watch him train in the pool and in the weight room; he will accept any challenge we give him.”
Lucas, 16, is the son of Elizabeth and Trey Caswell and has a 4.0 GPA. He is the president of Skyline’s Quizbowl team and the Student Action Senate and editor at large for the school newspaper. Outside of sports, he likes to cook and bake for his family and friends and spending time outside.
Caswell is still figuring out his college plans but hopes to keep swimming at the next level. “I want to go to a school where I would want to be regardless of my ability to swim,” he says. “What happens in March will really be key in determining whether I will end up swimming in college and where I end up. I am aiming for some really great schools and I’d love to swim but I’d rather be able to go to a great school and not swim than compromise the school for the sake of swimming.”
As long Caswell keeps swimming to the tune of “persistence without insight will lead to the same outcome,” he will no doubt find the best outcome.
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