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Posted on Sep 3, 2018

Grace Van Der Merwe to swim for QHS

Quincy swimmer Grace Van Der Merwe (pronounced MER-we), a standout with the summer swim team Stingrays will swim for the high school this fall.
As part of the same cooperative agreement that allowed Jackson Calloway to swim for Quincy High School last spring, Van Der Merwe will practice with the Eastmont High School swimmers and travel to the same meets they do. Once at the meets, she will represent Quincy High School.
Van Der Merwe, 16, is a home-schooled junior, and a longtime swimming enthusiast. She not only swims for the Stingrays but she also swims for Velocity, a swimming team out of Wenatchee.
“She swims year-round,” said her mother, Michelle.
“I’m more comfortable in the water than in any other sport,” said Grace, who has lofty goals for her first season swimming for the Jacks: She wants to make state.
Last year, family obligations kept her from swimming for the Jacks. Instead, she spent time in South Africa, with relatives who live there.
This year, it’s a different story.
She will stay stateside and will set her sights on the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, site of the state championship meet every year.
“I will most likely be doing the freestyle events, like the 500 (meters), the 200 (meters) and the 50 (meters),” she said. “I might do a couple of the other strokes, but it looks like it’s going to be mostly freestyle.”
She has already begun practicing with Eastmont swimmers, and the chemistry has been good, despite the different zip codes. It helps, Michelle said, that several Eastmont swimmers also swim for Velocity.
“They are treating me fine,” Grace said. “They are treating me like a teammate.”

By Sebastian Moraga, sports@4n5.ecc.myftpupload.com