Athlete of the Issue: Alaina Cai ’23

By Katya Agrawal

This season, Winsor’s Varsity Swim Team has thrived; so far, the team is undefeated. Swimmers will race in three more meets before they move on to the EIL (Eastern Independent League) playoffs as well as the New England regional competition. One vital member of the team is Alaina Cai ’23. Cai has set the 100 fly and 200 IM (individual medley) records at Winsor with times of 1:01.10 minutes and 2:18.09 minutes respectively. She also contributed to the 200 medley relay record with a time of 1:59.14 minutes and the 400 freestyle relay record with a time of 3:47.95 minutes. At EIL’s last year, she placed first in the 100 fly; at New England’s, she came in third in that same category. Finally, she received the Swimming Cup at Winsor’s 2022 Awards Ceremony. The Banner is incredibly lucky to have had a chance to interview her!

When and why did you start swimming? Tell the basic story of your swimming career.

I started swimming when I was around five years old. My older brother had begun swimming the year before, and it was something that I kind of just picked up from him. I began swimming competitively the next year in first grade. I spent two years on MAC (Metrowest Aquatic Club), before moving to Shawmut Aquatic Club, which later merged with Crimson Aquatics, for the next eight. These last two years I have been on CRA (Charles River Aquatics) but have been swimming more on and off as school has gotten busier. 

What have been some of the highlights of this season for you? 

Some highlights of this season have been beating Dana Hall, our biggest rival, twice. We beat them both at our home pool and theirs, which was very exciting because we haven’t been able to do so in the past few seasons. 

What do you enjoy most about the Winsor swim team?

I love the Winsor swim team and being part of it. It’s very challenging both physically and mentally, but getting through tough practices is extremely rewarding, especially when you have your friends there with you. Everyone is extremely supportive both at practice and at meets, and it’s exciting to see people race hard.

Do you hope to continue to swim in college? What are your future plans?

I hope to continue swimming in college, though likely not at the varsity level. I love swimming, and it’s been a part of my life for so long that I’m not totally willing to give it up, but I plan to focus more on schoolwork in the future and swim for my enjoyment. 

The Banner can’t wait to see where Cai’s future endeavors will take her!

Responses edited for brevity and clarity.