Freshman Friday: Jack Shimabukuro


By Christina Lappas

From being wet to being set, freshman Jack Shimabukuro swam for the varsity swim team and played freshman volleyball, things he was very nervous to do at a high school level.

Shimabukuro played club volleyball for five years, and club swimming for four year so he knew he wanted to play both sports as a freshman and throughout his high school career.

“I was very nervous about swim season, because I didn’t know if I was going to make JV or Varsity swim team. I had to train a lot more in the offseason to prepare for varsity swimming,” Shimabukuro said.

Training really helped out and prepared him for the hard, and time-consuming season.

“I ended up swimming with varsity at the end of the season. It prepared my body to swim six days a week. At the end of the season I did pretty-well. I want to continue swimming at the varsity level,” Shimabukuro said.

Besides sports, Shimabukuro is involved with clubs, and takes his academics seriously.  

“Swimming is one of my main priorities, but I focus on academics, and others clubs like Relay for Life and Freshman Cabinet. I believe in giving back to the community, it makes me feel good,” Shimabukuro said.

Swimming is more of a focus than volleyball and the clubs.

“I like swimming better because I can put in my own hard work and it pays off in the end, which you can see through your times and records,” Shimabukuro said.

Longtime friend, freshman Lexi Lee has always been friends with Shimabukuro, but high school made them grow closer.

“We’ve been friends since third grade. We’ve always been close, but we just got closer this year because we have classes together and swimming, “ Lee said.

Bleaching and shaving heads is something that has become a tradition for swimmers at West and although it isn’t required,  Shimabukuro decided to participate.

“At first it felt really awkward to do it, but then when the whole team was there and together, it was like team bonding. It made me feel like an even bigger part of the team,” Shimabukuro said.

Making friends was easy for Shimabukuro to do, he made friends in all different grades all because of swimming.

“I knew a couple of the kids coming into swimming, but I met a lot of the freshman and also got to know a lot of the upperclassmen,” Shimabukuro said.

Freshman Julia Matuszek became friends with Shimabukuro this year, and they share their growing interest for swimming.

“We always talk about things that we have in common, like swimming. I always ask him for advice on how to swim faster since I just started water polo and he always comes to my games, so it brought us closer,” Matuszek said.

As the school year is starting to wrap up, Shimabukuro already has his goals set for next year.

“I hope to beat the sophomore record for swimming for the 100 fly. I have to get a 55 seconds to beat it, but right now I have a 59, so it’ll be kinda close. I want to continue both volleyball, swimming, clubs, as well as striving in my academics,” Shimabukuro said.