Polaha leading girls team
Megan Polaha is making her mark on the Parkland swimming and diving team. The senior is the top girls performer, and the leader of a team looking to repeat as District 11 champions, a run that dates back to the 2008-09 season.
Polaha has been an instrumental part of this program. She has won the 100 breastroke each of the last three years. Her freshman year, at Central Catholic, Polaha earned gold in the 200 individual medley as well as the 100 breastroke.
Transitioning from AA to AAA seemed to have little effect on Polaha's competitive nature. She continued her success after leading Central to a second place finish at districts in 2009, to becoming a district champion in 2010 and 2011 at Parkland.
"Coming from AA to AAA it's a lot faster," Polaha said. "AAA is a bit more competitive, not that AA isn't. Practices were also a bit harder and more challenging because there were less facilities like here at Parkland."
Polaha currently owns the second fastest time in the state in the 100 fly, with her time of 56.68, 0.17 seconds behind Meaghan Raab of Hershey. The 100 fly and 100 breastroke are the two main events that Polaha competes in at the District 11 and PIAA championship meets.
How is she so successful at what she does? Always warming up and staying loose.
"For me, I have to warm up before every event," said Polaha. "I have to keep my heart rate up. I like to get into a zone during warmups."
Polaha first took to the water competitively at the young age of five. She swam for a youth program at Northern Lehigh in Slatington.
Parkland's girls are off to a good start and will hope to qualify a large group of swimmers to the state tournament, as they do almost every year.
In 2013, Polaha is eyeing gold in the 100 fly, as she fell just short of that feat a year ago.
After graduation in June, Polaha will be swimming at Division I Fordham University in New York.
"I'm excited about that," said Polaha. "I've taken an unofficial visit and an official visit, and I was able to talk to the coaches. I enjoyed meeting the team and I feel that I will fit in well."
Look for the Trojans to be a strong favorite for the Lehigh Valley Conference, District 11 and the state in the upcoming months.