Greenways Tavia Stemmons, Lucy Turley Excel In Swimming, Cross Country In Same Season

They get up before the sun to start their day. There's a six-mile run, then a two-hour practice in the pool.

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Then, school.

Then, sleep.

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By the time they're done studying at home, they are ready to collapse. But they wouldn't want it any other way.

This is the fall routine for Phoenix Greenway runners/swimmers Tavia Stemmons and Lucy Turley, who are among the school's best in two of the most demanding individual sports.

Oct 11, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Greenway High School swimmers Lucy Turley and Tavia Stemmons (right) during practice at David C Uribe Pool at Cactus Park. © Rob Schumacher-Arizona Republic Oct 11, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Greenway High School swimmers Lucy Turley and Tavia Stemmons (right) during practice at David C Uribe Pool at Cactus Park.

But they wouldn't know what to do without either sport. So they press on in both.

Stemmons was fifth last year at state in the 100-yard butterfly and eighth in the 50 freestyle. She is the team's No. 2 cross country runner on a team that placed second at the Thunderbird Invitational and in the top 10 in the Queen Creek Twilight Invitational.

Turley, a former synchronize swimmer, was a state qualifier at the sate swimming championships last year in the 100 free. She won the Thunderbird Invitational cross country meet and was third in at the Queen Creek Twilight.

They also happen to be two of the school's top students.

So what's it like by the time their day is over?

"Really tired," Stemmons, a senior, said.

"It's exhausting," Turley, a junior, added.

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Stemmons and Turley love to compete in everything. When Turley's synchronize swim club didn't survive the COVID-19 shutdown, she moved to swimming, which ended up being easier because of less time underwater.

Cross country also helps them for track and field in the spring.

"Last year, they brought each other into their sports," swimming coach Brian Anderson said.

Stemmons and Turley have become good friends through their similar passions in sports and school.

"We're both very competitive and I think we just like competing against other people," Turley said. "We get our motivation from that."

Turley is ranked 29th in the state and Stemmons is in the 30s for all divisions in cross country.

Stemmons, a club swimmer, has a chance to medal at state in swimming. Turley has a chance to help Greenway gain points in the relays.

Swimming came first for Stemmons, then cross country.

"I always knew that I was decent at (cross country)," Stemmons said. "When I did track, I decided to do cross country my junior year, because I wanted to get better for track, as well."

Turley started doing synchronized swimming at 6 and stopped when she was 15.

"I will always have a love for synchro (swimming)," Turley said. "Personally, I think synchro is harder because you have to hold your breath for a really long time."

Stemmons says she thinks the running has slowed her down in the pool. But she loves to run. So she pressed on in both sports. She also is in the top 4% of her senior class at Greenway.

"The reason I'm not taking as many hard classes is because of doing both sports at the same time," Stemmons said. "I'm only taking a couple of AP (Advanced Placement courses)."

They'll have to figure out what to do at sectionals and state.

"I'm looking to cross that bridge when I get there," Turley said.

The state swim meet falls on the same day as the sectional cross country meet.

Stemmons says she will skip sectional cross country, hoping that the Greenway team can still qualify for state and she can run at state.

"I'm going to taper for swim," she said.

The hard work, the exhaustion is worth it for both athletes.

"You just have to tell yourself that the pain is temporary," Turley said. "It will make you better."

To suggest human-interest story ideas and other news, reach Obert at richard.obert@arizonarepublic.com or 602-316-8827. Follow him on Twitter @azc_obert.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Greenway's Tavia Stemmons, Lucy Turley excel in swimming, cross country in same season

Source : https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/wellness/greenways-tavia-stemmons-lucy-turley-excel-in-swimming-cross-country-in-same-season/ar-AAPtS7f

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