Summer Fullwood could barely hold back the tears as she climbed out of the pool for the final time.
The Rouse senior swam in her final competitive race on Saturday at the Swimming & Diving State Meet, coming in 11th place overall and finishing the consolation final in 59.63 seconds.
“That was the last race ever in my swimming career, so it’s an emotional feeling overall,” Fullwood said. “It’s an amazing experience and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
In her race on Saturday, she swam the first 50 yards in 27.95 seconds and finished with 31.68. She swam the race in 59.12 in the prelims on Friday afternoon and qualified for the state meet with a time of 1:00.25 in regionals.
Fullwood first swam for Rouse during her freshman year. In her sophomore and juniors seasons, she only swam with a club team. She decided to return to the Raiders this year because she liked the team aspect at the high school level.
“To be able to represent my high school at an event like this is pretty amazing,” she said. “Swimming has taught me so much self-discipline that I carry into my academic career. The feeling after a race — it’s exhilarating”
During the race, even members of the Cedar Park swimming team were standing on the edge of the pool cheering during her last competitive race.
Fullwood will attend the University of Texas in the fall and plans to study business.
“This is state, it doesn’t get a whole lot better than this,” she said.
In the championship final of the boys’ 50-yard freestyle, Gabriel Wood moved up one spot from prelims, finishing in seventh with a time of 21.69.
The junior has been to the state swim meet two seasons in a row and bettered his position from 10th a year ago. But Wood said he’s not sure if he’ll try to make it a three-peat and may focus on other passions such as weightlifting.
“I don’t know when my next meet is going to be,” Wood said. “But I moved up a spot, so that was good to see.”