East High Girls Swimming: Through the eyes of the swimmers and coaches


Kaylie Shannon

East High girl Swimmers glide through the water. The crowd is screaming, along with
coaches, Erin Lowe and Anna Liu. Senior Morgan Stout is kneeling down next to the
pool cheering her teammates on until they reach the end of their race. Sophomore Jessika Coll is finishing her 100 yard breaststroke. Will she beat her best time? This is always a goal for East Swimmers and their coaches.
Coach Erin Lowe has been coaching swim for over 25 years.

“I have coached some sort of East Swimming since I was 14. I have coached for 30 years at this point.” Lowe said. Lowe’s entire family is surrounded by swimming.
“I have coached three of my cousins at East High, and three nieces and nephews, and several more are coming up into the program soon, and now I coach my own son who is a sophomore swimmer at East,” Lowe said.

Sophomore Jessika Coll has been swimming almost her entire life. “The girls on the team make it enjoyable,” Coll said. Coll is very passionate about her love for swimming. She loves spending time with her teammates. “The East team is way different from other teams. We act like a family, and we support each other like a family,” Coll said.

Some moments stand out more than others. There are lots of memorable moments over the years, but one sticks out in particular for Lowe. “MaryKate Walling’s butterfly at regionals and State in 2018 was probably
one of my favorite moments,” Lowe said. “The huge smile on a swimmer’s face when they accomplish big things is great,”

Senior Kenna Dolphin is one of East High’s girls swimming captains. “One of my most memorable moments as a swimmer was during my junior year at districts, we were swimming the 400 free relay and got fourth in the meet
but ended up going fast enough to have the third fastest relay in East history,” Dolphin said. Dolphin likes to swim the individual medley, which is a combination of every stroke. Butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, and freestyle. Kenna also loves to do 100 yard butterfly. Michael Phelps made butterfly very popular, and it takes a lot of
upper body strength to complete 100 yards(equivalent to a football field) of butterfly.

East High needs more swimmers, too. At the end of the 2021-22 girls season, 14 out
of 30 girls are graduating and moving onto bigger and better things. Many of those leaving will end up continuing their swimming career. “Currently my nephews, whom I coached at East, are both collegiate swimmers. On the girls’ team, we have Morgan Stout and McKenna Dolphin who are both heading in that direction, it’s just a matter of where they end up,” Lowe said.

One of Easts’ biggest swim rivals is Ottumwa. The swimmers competed on Sept. 14. Lowe believes this meet was one of the most competitive meets this season. This meet is always fun competition. The swimmers are always neck and neck at the end of each race. At the Ottumwa meet this season, East unfortunately lost by only 10 points. The Scarlets did break lifetime best records, though. Junior Varsity is 4-0 on the season so far. The East Girls Swim team is constantly supporting each other at practices, meets, and even outside of the pool.