Summer earned state finals berths in the 500 freestyle and 200 freestyle as a freshman, finishing 13th in both events in her first trip to the Natatorium.
A season ago, she advanced to state in the 200 free and 100 free, taking fifth in the 200 free in 1:51.69 and seventh in the 100 free in :52.28.
She’s already knocked .25 seconds off of her 200 free time from last year’s state finals, as well as .33 seconds off of her 100 free time.
“Summer’s development as a swimmer has been impressive,” Western coach Brad Bennett said. “The focus she has from the beginning of the season, as far as intensity and desire to improve is at a very high level. The amount of mental fatigue she’s able to combat and fight through to improve times and work on the things she needs to is more rare than most of the people at her level. Her mental drive, day in and day out regardless of whether it’s practice or a meet, is rare.”
Bennett was an assistant on Western’s 2003 swim team, where Summer’s older brother, Teddy, won state titles in the 200 individual medley and 500 freestyle before claiming the IHSAA’s Herman F. Keller Mental Attitude Award.
“There are many similarities between the two of them,” Bennett said of Summer and Teddy. “They’re very focused on [whatever] part of their life their working on. I know Summer better, but Teddy struck me as fully committed to everything he did. He would swim has hard as he could in every drill. Summer is very similar in that respect.”
While Teddy and Summer’s father, Ted. Sr., swam at Princeton University, Teddy went on to swim at Notre Dame, where he was a team captain and All-Big East honoree.
Teddy is proud of the way his sister has carved out her own identity in the family’s signature sport.