Success is nothing new to the Lake Forest swim program. There have been state championships and one Scout, Matt Grevers, has six Olympics, three of them gold. This year is turning into something special and McCormick is a big part of it.
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Over the last two weeks, Lake Forest has finished just behind two-time defending state champion New Trier at invitational meets defeating Trevian relay teams three of four times while finishing second to them once.
Though not the fastest swimmer on the team, McCormick is in his fourth year on the varsity and responsible for the helping develop the cohesive unit seeking a high finish at the State Meet next month.
“He has great kindness and great compassion. He has tremendous empathy,” Coach Cindy Dell said. “He has a playful sense of humor. He knows when to be one of the guys and when to set himself apart.”
McCormick is one of three Scouts, along with Peter Grumhaus and Colin Rowe, who are in their fourth year of varsity competition. The three of them have been swimming together since sixth grade. “We know each other’s ups and downs,” McCormick said.
Though the bulk of the points come from Grumhaus, Rowe, Bogdan Belteanu, Daniel Smith and diver Andrew Marsh, McCormick has found a way to help his teammates achieve more than they thought they could.
Some of that became obvious at the end of the summer when the performances of all of them were eclipsing those of athletes who bested them a year ago. “We all participated over the summer,” McCormick said. “Fifteen or 20 of us were swimming somewhere.”
McCormick swims the 500-yard freestyle and the 200 freestyle with an individual goal of reaching the State Meet next month. “If I can be under five minutes by Sectional I have a good shot,” he said referring to the 500. “Anything is possible if you make it to State.”
While the others are adding more points, McCormick is doing his part to spur them on to greater heights. “He knows what to do out of the pool,” Dell said. “He’s the first one to encourage his teammates.”
As freshmen, McCormick, Grumhaus and Rowe swam on a team led by double state champion Mitch Stoehr. Last season they finished 10th in the State Meet. “They can be better,” Dell said of the 2013 potential.