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The La Salle Falconer

The student news site of La Salle Catholic College Preparatory.

The La Salle Falconer

The student news site of La Salle Catholic College Preparatory.

The La Salle Falconer

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Athlete of the Week: Graham Gilmore

Jasmine McIntosh
In both his sport and his education, senior Graham Gilmore considers himself a determined person. “I have the same drive for education that I do my sport,” he said.

Senior Graham Gilmore went into his final season on the La Salle swim team this winter with a goal of beating his personal record (PR), and with his driven mindset, he walked away from high school swimming having achieved it. “I got a great PR on my 50 free and my 100 [breaststroke],” he said. 

Gilmore’s passion for swimming began at Sellwood Pool. “My mom put me into swim lessons when I was around six years old,” he said. However, prior to attending La Salle, he had never swam on a team or swam competitively.

Gilmore’s favorite stroke is freestyle, and in meets he typically swims the 100 breaststroke and 50 freestyle. In addition, Gilmore participates in the medley relay, where he swims breaststroke, and the 200 freestyle relay. “Last year I really liked doing the 100 breaststroke, but this year I was a lot better on the 50 free,” he said. 

Off the pool deck, Gilmore makes sure to prioritize his physical health, specifically within his diet. “I always try to stay healthy, eat well,” he said, “I go for proteins, all that stuff.” 

Throughout his four years on La Salle’s swim team, Gilmore has experienced some rough patches in his relationship to swimming. “There have been some plateaus where I really needed to push myself,” he said. “I didn’t know what I was doing wrong.” Nonetheless, through speaking to his coaches and the support of his teammates, Gilmore has been able to push through his plateaus and continue to grow. 

Due to a change of coaches, Gilmore began the 2023 swim season feeling “a little nervous,” he said. “Nobody really knew who they were, we didn’t have a lot of information on them.” But as Gilmore and the rest of his team got to know them, he felt that “they were wonderful coaches,” he said. And despite his initial nervousness, he found that the new instructors pushed the team and created a stronger community. 

For Gilmore, his motivation to continue working hard in and out of the pool is seeing himself progress past his prior attempts. “I always have this urge to do better than what I did last time,” he said. 

Furthermore, while achieving his goal of breaking his PR’s in his freestyle and breaststroke events, Gilmore took inspiration from two Lasallian alumni swimmers, recalling his favorite swimming memories from the 2022 swim season with his teammates Gabriel De Leon and Aidan McCarthy, who were seniors during his junior year. 

“I was thinking about them while getting my PR’s,” he said. 

This year was no different from previous years in the sense that the swim team remained a strong and supportive community for Gilmore. “There’s lots of individual events and I think that can be seen as kind of dividing, but there’s a lot of community and we talk,” he said. “We motivate each other, we help each other.”

As a seasoned student athlete, Gilmore suggests that any student athlete struggling to balance both sports and schoolwork should “push to get it done right as you get home,” he said. “Don’t wait until 10 o’clock at night.” 

For his journey after La Salle, although he does not have concrete plans yet, Gilmore hopes to attend college and study physical therapy. Although he plans on leaving competitive swimming in the past, overall Gilmore feels that his final high school swim season  “went really well,” he said.

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