Lakeland junior Peter Kawash set two meet records and one pool record at the Ernie Shartle Invitational at Tunkhannock, winning the 100 backstroke, 100 butterfly and the 200 individual medley.
Family: Mom, Kristy; dad, Pete; sister, Molly
Other sports you play: Baseball
Athletes you admire: Michael Phelps, Caeleb Dressel and Derek Jeter.
Any sports teams you follow? I’m kind of New York based — Giants, Yankees, Brooklyn Nets. For college, Penn State.
Give me a skill you’d like to master away from sports. I’m studying Spanish right now. That could be kind of cool to master that. It’s very tough.
Any pre-meet rituals or superstitions? I do the same stretch routine behind the blocks to get ready. A lot of music to get mentally ready to race, thinking about prior races and what I can improve upon.
Talk about the peaks and valleys in training. This is one of the bigger meets of the season. Early season we went to a big meet at Bucknell University where states is held. That was another peak, and then there’s that winter grind over Christmas, that lull of practice, practice, practice, to this meet. Now it will be down until county championships in about three weeks, and then districts and states after that. It’s a constant up-down, up-down.
Is it a little odd, given that Valley View and Lakeland are pretty big rivals in some other sports, that you go to Lakeland and train with Valley View? It’s odd because you swim with them and they’re your buddies. You play baseball against them and those aren’t our friends. It’s weird. Hard to keep that middle ground. At least none of them do both sports.
Funniest teammate. Probably Nate Micknick from Lakeland. He just has a positive attitude, even if he just went out and swam not a great race. He always has this positive vibe around him and it’s easy to take his energy and put it toward whatever I’m doing.
Is this the biggest thrill you’ve had in sports? States last year was surreal, just making it there was awesome. But this is probably right up there with it.
Three people you’d like to have dinner with. Michael Phelps, Derek Jeter and Kobe Bryant.
Who has had the greatest influence on your athletic career? Michael Phelps, 100%. It’s the reason I started swimming. Never swam until the 2012 Summer Olympics. I said, this is awesome. I have to try this. I went in our backyard and started swimming around in my little circle pool and I said, ‘Mom, I’m joining the swim team.’ Ever since that day, that’s the guy I want to be like. That was who got the ball rolling. I played baseball from the time I was 5, 6, but I didn’t swim until I was about 10.
After high school, what’s next? Baseball or swimming? I think it’s going to be swimming. Baseball’s been my thing since I was 5, but now I’m so deeply involved and I love swimming. I’m going to try to swim in college.
What do you plan to study? Civil engineering.
Marty Myers began his career as a sports writer at The Wayne Independent in Honesdale, where he served as sports editor and later managing editor. After 10 years there, he joined The Times-Tribune in 1994 and has spent the ensuing years reporting on high school sports, local and professional golf. An award-winning journalist, he also enjoys his duties as a copy editor for The Times-Tribune, editing stories and designing pages. A native of Williamsport, Marty resides in Clarks Summit. Reach him at email@example.com, 570-348-9100 x5437 or @mmyersTT.