For Collin Ralston and his swim and dive teammates, it was good to get the adrenaline flowing in the pool once again.
On April 27, the Mercer Island High School (MIHS) senior and the rest of the Islander crew splashed into their season with a victory over Bellevue High School.
“The team was definitely super excited. It was just good to be back, for sure,” said the fourth-year MIHS swimmer who will compete next season for Colorado College in Division III action.
Last year, Ralston won the 100 breaststroke in 55.70 at the 3A state meet, which doesn’t reside on the schedule this year due to the pandemic. In 2020 at state, he also took fourth in the 200 individual medley in 1:53.47.
On the breaststroke, he said: “It’s fun. It’s high energy, short race.”
In the team realm at state last year, MIHS finished atop the standings, and the Islanders were elated to win that prestigious title after taking second the previous two years. They defeated second-place Bainbridge Island, 283-255.5.
“We had gotten second by 14 points my sophomore year to Bainbridge, so we were really fired up and we really wanted to win state my junior year,” he said. Bainbridge also beat out second-place MIHS when Ralston was a freshman, so MIHS finally leapfrogged the Spartans to snag the top spot.
Ralston has bonded with his teammates over the last four years.
“You lift each other up to swim faster, but it’s also a very personal sport,” he said.
The Reporter asked Ralston a series of questions to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse into his life:
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Just to be true to myself, I think that’s really important.
If you could go to dinner with one person, who would that be?
It’s not one person, but I think, honestly, just going to dinner with swim friends and having fun with them. I look up to a lot of them and they inspire me every day.
What skill would you like to learn?
I want to get better at mountain biking. That’s one thing that I’ve tried to get better at, but I usually just don’t have the time. I really enjoy it.
How do you spend your spare time?
Listening to music or going on hikes, spending time outdoors.
What type of music do you listen to?
Right now I’m kind of listening to 2010s, 2000s rock music, which is cool. (Arctic Monkeys and MGMT are two.)
What superpower would you like to have?
I think telekinesis, for sure, because then I think I would be able to lift myself up and then I would be able to fly, but I would also have all the other powers of telekinesis.
What makes you laugh?
My friends, my girlfriend and just funny images on the internet, I guess.