If you ask anyone involved in PHS’s girls swimming program, she will say that Brianna Romaine ’16 is the athlete with the loudest voice on the team. It is not odd to find her jamming out to a song behind the diving block before a race.
According to Romaine, when she joined the Peddie Aquatics Association at the age of six, she was hardly an athlete, and nobody could have predicted what was to come. “Honestly, I was really bad at every other sport, so my mom put me in swimming hoping it would be a good way to get some exercise,” Romaine said.
Romaine’s dedication led her to achieve many of her long-term goals. Swimming with Peddie, Romaine was introduced to many other competitive swimmers who showed her what could be achieved through the program’s rigorous practice schedule: six days a week and at least three hours each day.
“I’d always wanted to qualify for Futures Championships in North Carolina and I ended up doing that last summer,” Romaine said. She swam one of her best times, 1:06.13 for the 100-meter backstroke, at the time trial in August of 2015. Romaine has also earned the title of Scholastic All-American, awarded to high school swimmers by USA Swimming Awards based on a combination of GPA and swimming performance.
Beside her individual club swimming accomplishments, Romaine has gained team experience during her time at PHS. “PHS swimming has definitely changed my outlook on the sport as a team sport,” Romaine said. “It’s definitely not an individual sport here. All the success we’ve seen is because of the team as a whole.”
Head Coach Carly Misiewicz praised Romaine for setting a positive tone on the team. “She really cares about everybody regardless of if they’re in a center lane or if they’re on an outside lane,” Misiewicz said. “She knows that every point does matter.”
After Romaine concludes her final season at PHS, the bulk of her training at Peddie will serve to prepare her to be even more competitive alongside athletes at the United States Military Academy at West Point.
Romaine always had high aspirations for her swimming career after high school. “I loved going to practice, even on Saturday mornings,” Romaine said. “Something just clicked and as I moved up through the age groups, I ended up going to practice every day and I started to get interested in swimming at the collegiate level.”
Misiewicz has high expectations for Romaine in the school’s Division I program.
“If she … doesn’t let the fact that she’s a freshman affect her, and keeps her strong voice and keeps the same mentality and personality that she has, she can only grow from there,” she said.
While Romaine has high aspirations for her swimming career, she realizes that military duty must come first as a student of the Academy. “I’m going to the school to serve in the military, so swimming kind of takes second to that,” Romaine said. “I’m still really excited to get another four years to be able to swim on an amazing team.”