Shaun Scott/staff photo Mercer Island junior swimmer Annie Pearse, who competes in the 50 free and 100 free, is striving to place at the Class 3A state swim meet in the 50 free during the 2017 season.

Preparation drives Mercer Island’s Pearse in the pool

Mercer Island junior swimmer Annie Pearse loves swimming as fast as she possibly can in the pool.

Pearse, who captured seventh place in the 50 free at the 2016 Class 3A state swim and dive championships, said there is little margin for error in her favorite race.

“During a sprint, if you make the slightest little mistake, you are kind of messed up for the entire race,” Pearse said. “You just have to have a lot of energy.”

Pearse hopes she can eclipse last year’s seventh-place finish at the state meet this season.

“I would like to place above seventh place,” Pearse said with a smile.

Pearse said she took up the sport of swimming because of her childhood babysitter when she lived in Colorado.

“My babysitter (Ashley Hickey) was a huge swimmer. She ended up getting recruited to swim at UC Boulder (University of Colorado. I always have looked up to her. That is why I decided to start swimming. I tried to swim all the same events as her and I used to follow her everywhere,” she said.

Mercer Island head coach Evan Moline is confident in Pearse’s abilities in the pool.

“Getting seventh place at state last year was awesome but we both think she can do even better,” Moline said. “I always tell her don’t breathe a lot because every time you take a breathe, it kind of narrows up your stroke cycle and slows you down. Whenever we’re doing breathe control work, she is very focused. She is pretty strong and that is definitely needed with sprinting. Combining her technique with that strength and burst has really helped her improve a lot this season.”

Recently the Mercer Island Reporter had an opportunity to ask Pearse a few questions about her life away from the swimming pool.

Mercer Island Reporter: What is your favorite movie of all time?

Annie Pearse: It is definitely “Harry Potter.” I read the books. It was the first book that I have ever finished.

MIR: What is your dream vacation spot?

AP: Fiji. I have just always wanted to go there. Every time I have looked up a beautiful place I would like to go, it’s Fiji.

MIR: What is your favorite restaurant in Mercer Island?

AP: I really like “I Luv Pho.” It is my favorite place to go when it’s raining outside.

MIR: What is your favorite TV show?

AP: I really like “Friday Night Lights.” I love Friday football games. That is one of my favorite things.

MIR: What is something unique about you that nobody would know?

AP: I can sing (country music).

MIR: How many text messages do you send per day?

AP: I send way too many. Maybe between 100 to 200.

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Photo courtesy of Allison Nelson
                                The Mercer Island Islanders girls swim squad registered a fourth place finish at the Class 3A state swim meet on Nov. 11 at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way. The Islanders compiled 180 team points. Mercer Island junior Annie Pearse earned second place in the 50 free with a time of 24.36 and captured seventh place in the 100 free clocking a time of 53.83. Alexa Williams finished in 11th place in the 100 backstroke with a time of 1:00.55. Kai Williamson captured fourth place in the 100 backstroke with a time of 59.15. Islanders’ junior Sophia McGuffin earned fifth place in the 1-meter dive. Hailey Vandenbosch finished in 10th place in the 100 fly with a time of 59.85. Elizabeth Bailey earned 12th place in the 50-free with a time of 25.04 and 13th place in the 100 free with a time of 54.51. Chloe Mark took sixth place in the 500 free with a time of 5:13.5. Ellie Williams finished in ninth place in the 500 free with a time of 5:17.01.
                                RELAYS
                                The 200 medley relay team of Kaitlyn Williamson, Grace Olsen, Hailey Vandenbosch and Ellie Williams captured sixth place with a time of 1:52.44. The 200 free relay squad consisting of Annie Pearse, Julia Williamson, Elizabeth Bailey and Ellie Williams earned seventh place with a time of 1:40.35. The 400 free relay team of Annie Pearse, Hailey Vandenbosch, Elizabeth Bailey and Julia Williamson nabbed a fifth place finish with a time of 3:37.76.
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