The last lap in the pool is slowly approaching for college seniors.
For Ashlee Sall and Rachel Hoeve, senior season will be full of lasts. The seniors at Liberty University are glad they get to share those lasts as NCAA Division I swimmers.
“I am trying to take in everything I can because it is definitely going to be sad when it is over,” Sall said. “I am feeling really good going into my senior year. I get to be a captain this year. That is going to be a little different, obviously more responsibility. I am definitely excited.”
Sall, a former Holland Christian state champion, and Hoeve, an all-state swimmer at Zeeland, were part of a strong Liberty showing at the Coastal College Sports Association championships last year.
Hoeve finished fourth in the 50 freestyle (22.76) in an NCAA provisional qualifying time. She finished seventh in the 100 freestyle (51.62) and eighth in the 100 backstroke (56.89). She anchored the winning 200 medley relay (1:39.32) and was on the runner-up 200 freestyle relay (1:31.17).
“I am just super excited for senior year. I am ready to go in and have fun — we know what is coming,” Hoeve said.
Sall took sixth in the 200 freestyle (1:50.55), seventh in the 1,650 freestyle (17:13.79) and 10th (4:57.82) in the 500 freestyle.
“I just want to get best times and score as many points as possible for my team. Last year, I got top eight at conference in two of my events, so this year I would like to score in all three,” said Sall, a public health major. “Just continuing working on my endurance and mental game for the mile. I could use some more work on my underwaters for the 200 free. It is being comfortable holding a faster pace and knowing I can finish the race strong.”
While Sall’s races have gotten longer, Hoeve’s are considerably shorter. A distance specialist in high school, Hoeve is now one of the top sprinters in the Division I conference.
“It didn’t take that long. It…