On the water

Although more than a decade of swimming is nearing an end for Mackenzie Fry, she may not be completely abandoning the water.

The Columbus North senior is strongly considering joining the rowing team at Indiana University in the fall. The Hoosiers have traditionally taken athletes who played other sports in high school, including current rowers and North graduates Rebecca Brougher and Amelia Herrick.

“I’ll definitely miss the whole team aspect of swimming,” Fry said. “But I think I’m ready to try something new.”

Katlin Brown, a family friend of Fry, rowed for IU the past two years.

“She’s always talked about it, and I’ve thought about it for a couple years, so I took interest in it and looked into it,” Fry said. “It’s always kind of been in the back of my head, and I don’t think I want to swim in college, so I think this is what I want to do. But nothing is decided yet; it’s just an idea.”

For now, Fry is focused on finishing her senior swim season on a high note. Saturday, she’ll lead the Bull Frogs into the Conference Indiana meet at Terre Haute South.

“I’m excited for conference,” Fry said. “Training-wise, I’ve had a better season than before, but the times, we’ll just have to see how it comes in the championship season. I think I’m definitely faster than I have been in my 100 fly.”

A three-time state qualifier, Fry made it in the 200-yard freestyle for the second time last year and finished 25th. She missed qualifying for state in the 100 butterfly by about half a second.

Fry has been swimming faster times this season than she did at similar points last year.

“I think Mackenzie is looking really good in the water,” first-year North coach Bridger Bell said. “”I think she’s had a really strong start to the season. She’s had good times, and she’s been a positive leader on the team. She’s one of the team captains, and she’s helped the girls come together and pursue their goals collectively.”

Last year, Fry swam on the 400 freestyle relay team that finished sixth at state and the 200 freestyle relay team that took 14th. She’s swam on all three relays at times this season.

“Mackenzie always gladly goes where she’s needed by the team, in terms of which event she’s swimming,” Bell said. “She’s been a really strong relay swimmer. She’s tried some different (individual) events this year and has always been ready to step up and race.”

The Bull Frogs will be trying to continue their streak of never having lost a Conference Indiana meet. They’ll then try to defend their sectional title on Feb. 6.

“I want to be a good captain to my team and hopefully encourage them and finish strong,” Fry said.

If you go

What: Conference Indiana swimming and diving meet

When: 9 a.m. Saturday

Where: Terre Haute South High School

Teams: Columbus North, Bloomington North, Bloomington South, Franklin Central, Perry Meridian, Southport, Terre Haute North, Terre Haute South

Author photo
Ted Schultz is sports editor for The Republic. He can be reached at tschultz@therepublic.com or 812-379-5628.