Although she played a little bit of Parks and Rec soccer and basketball as a kid, Darby Coles gravitated toward swimming.
The more Coles swam, the more she became hooked on the sport. She has had a goal to swim in college, and next year, she’ll get to do that when she competes at Marshall University.
“I think people look at (swimming) more as an individual sport, but when you come to high school, it’s so much more a team sport than you would think,” said Coles, a senior at Columbus North. “It can really go either way, so I really like that about it.”
Last year, Coles attended a Marshall football game with her family. She had heard about the school from former North coach Jim Sheridan, who had swam there, and from watching the movie “We Are Marshall.”
Coles was scheduled to visit to Cleveland State over fall break, but canceled that after talking to Marshall coach Bill Tramel. She plans to sign during a Nov. 9 ceremony at North.
“After going on my recruit trip (to Marshall), I found that the campus was really homey, and I could definitely see myself there,” Coles said. “The team is like a family, and I connected really well with them, so it was overall a really good fit.”
As a sophomore, Coles finished 25th at state in the 100-yard freestyle. She didn’t qualify for state in that event last year, but did make it as part of the Bull Frogs’ 200 medley relay team.
Coles finished second in last year’s sectional in both the 100 freestyle and 200 individual medley.
“I only think she’s just tapped into what she’s really capable of doing,” first-year North coach Logan Schaefer said. “I think this year, we’re going to tap into that. She’s very excited about the season to come, as am I.”
One of Coles’ goals for this season is to break the school record of 51.55 seconds in the 100 freestyle set by Grace Haskett two years ago. She also wants to get the team to state in as many events as possible.
“After kind of a rough patch last year, we definitely want to work to get our conference (Indiana) title back for sure,” Coles said. “We have a lot of new people coming in, and I think as a team, we can definitely work toward that.”
Name: Darby Coles
School: Columbus North
Other school activities: Student Assembly, Student Council
College choice: Marshall