Spotlight On: Nate Neeley

Young Swimming Success


Ryan Horwitz

This past weekend, swimming prodigy Nate Neeley competed in the Michigan Boys Division 1 State Championships meet. Spectrum was lucky enough to ask him some questions just before the meet.

How long have you been swimming?

I have been swimming for about 10 years, basically my whole life.

What inspired you to start?

My mom was a swimmer, so she suggested I try it, and I fell in love with the sport after winning my first race.

What is your favorite swimming experience?

My favorite swimming experience was probably winning the league meet and breaking the varsity record for the 400 free relay with Charlie Vincent, Josh Plyer, and my brother Nick. We had a good group of guys that year and it was a great race against Clarkson.

How has swim impacted your day to day life?

Swimming has made me realize how important being part of a team and working for your goals are. The harder you work, the better off you are both in the pool and in everyday life.

What is your typical, if any, pre-swim routine?

Before a big race, I always listen to a couple of my favorite pregame songs to get in the right mindset, swim a little bit to get ready in the warm up pool, and jump around to get my blood pumping.

What are you doing to prepare for tomorrow? (asked before the day of the meet)

I’ve shaved down smooth like butter, envisioned my races, and worked the whole season to prepare. I’m really excited to see what me and the other boys can do at finals.

Neeley swam in both the 50 and 100 freestyle, placing 5th in both swims on Friday, qualifying him for All State and Finals the next day. On Saturday Neeley participated in the same events, swimming with the other talented young men. He placed 7th in the 50 free and 6th in the 100 free, performing well considering the company he was in. He finished in the top 8 that weekend, quite an impressive run. During the meet, Neeley broke two varsity records in the 50 and 100 free, an incredible accolade. Additionally, he was the only swimmer to make it to finals for an individual event from his group, another astonishing feat. Currently, Neeley is ranked 21st in the state for his special events.

After the big weekend, Spectrum once again reached out to Neeley, asking what he thought about his performance and what lies ahead. He joyously responded, “I was really happy with my swims, and it was a lot of fun to compete. I’m looking forward now to off season training and next season to see if I can drop some more time.”

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