The Atlantic Trojan Boys’ Swim Team was recognized Wednesday evening by the School Board for their outstanding season. Athletic Director Matt Alexander introduced Coach Dean Junker, Assistant Volunteer Coach Jennifer Miller, and the Nishna Valley YMCA’s Jackie Sampson, who he said does a lot of behind the scenes work, including the organizational details.
Coach Junker introduced some of the swim team members who were able to make it to the meeting. Those same members were honored earlier in the evening at the Atlantic City Council meeting, including Nik Landuis, from Clarinda, Cody McCreedy, Tyson Parker, Cole Sampson, Jake Redler, Damon Miller and Avery Anderson. Coach Junker said the boys team ended up 16th in the State Swimming Meet, with several better, individual performances.
Some members of the Atlantic Boys Swim Team and Coach Dean Junker (Far right).
Junker said when Atlantic first began showing up at the meets, no one knew who they were or why they were even there. He said “But once ya thump ‘em a little bit, they wake up real fast.” They competed against much larger schools and made a name for themselves in winning three State records. The coach said he’s very proud of the boys and how their success and has inspired much younger kids.
There’s an 8 (years old) and Under Boys Relay team as well, which the Coach says he’s never had before. This year, they were lucky to have six participants, only four of which may compete in the relay event. He says the boys won the title of State Champions in the 8 and Under category, and they were thrilled.
Jackie Sampson says the YMCA’s “Feeder program” for the High School Swim Team had 67 swimmers this past year, or, the “Sharks” program. 66 swam in the sectional meet and 40 made it to State. She said “These kids come to swim for Dean and for their teammates.” She said kids are coming from all over southwest Iowa just to swim and train with Coach Junker.