Drowning in a pool of their goodbye tears

By Karoline Czerski

Emma Spooner was almost overlooked in the fifth-year profile hunt, and rightly so–she is graduating after four years, an almost unheard of feat for athletes, not to mention the Gauntleteers who cover them.

With an English Honours degree under her belt, Emma hopes to continue swimming beyond the familiar depths of the U of C swimming pool, with an eye on the Olympic trials and possible Olympic glory.

"The trials are coming up, so we’ll see what happens," says a humble Spooner.

She is leaving behind quite the history in the Calgary swimming community. Nine years of training, starting with the Calgary Patriots, moving to Nose Creek, and finally ending up at U of C Varsity, have taught Spooner some valuable life lessons–like effective time management.

"The hardest part was trying to balance school and swimming," she recalls.

Spooner’s dedication allowed her to excel in both. Her swimming highlights, after some reflection, were winning the 50m breaststroke at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport Championships two years ago, and a similar victory in the 100m breaststroke gold-metal win this year in Toronto.

"Making the Pan-Pac team and competing last summer in Korea [were also highlights]," adds Spooner.

When asked how she enjoyed her teammates–an admittedly loaded question–she responded from the depths.

"We spend so much time together, they’re kind of a part of you," she explains reflectively.

A tranquil, reflective quality will aid Spooner, especially going into teaching, as she plans to apply into an Education program, in the coming year.

As for Carrie Burgoyne, a fifth-year Humanities graduate in Spanish and French, reflection might be a vice in her chosen line of work–fire fighting. Instead, this Winnipeg native counts on her aggressive attitude to get her as far as she can, possibly even to the Olympics.

"She’s vying for the Olympic team," boasts coach Mike Blondal, speaking on behalf of Burgoyne while she’s off training .

In her five years with the club, Burgoyne, a 400m Individual Medley and 400m freestyle specialist, has represented Canada internationally and medaled repeatedly at both Canada West and CIS Championships.

"She’s a diamond in the rough," says Karoline Czerski, swimming expert.

Indeed she is.

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