Well traveled Jamieson ready to make name in PA
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TOWAMENCIN- After moving from California to Germany to Illinois, junior Noah Jamieson found himself this year at North Penn and has made tremendous contributions to the swim team. At District qualifiers, Jamieson swam himself a spot at States in the 100m Fly and 3 relays and became a popular name heard around the pool. Being such an integral part of the swim team, he has adapted pretty well for being at NPHS for less than a year.
“Moving in high school wasn’t that hard. It might have been hard if I had a different outlook on it, but I’ve moved before so it wasn’t new to me. I moved right into classes I would have at my other school so it worked out great. I was born in San Diego, California and was there until age three, but then I moved to Germany until age six. Then, we moved to Illinois, and I was there until this year, but we were in the city for the first two years,” said Jamieson.
Jamieson’s high school in Illinois was only about 500 kids per grade, a little less than half of the size of grade at NPHS. He explained that he lived in a bubble town that he felt was not representative of the real world because people there were all from the same higher income families and he was not a fan of the way they acted. Jamieson moved here due to his dad’s job and they searched for good schools for swimming and water polo for his younger brother coming up in 8th grade, and they found North Penn.
“I like it better here. With a small highschool, half the kids come from one middle school and half come from the other, so pretty much everyone knows each other. It’s one town so everyone is in sports together, and everyone knows each other going into the school. In a smaller community, it seemed like you couldn’t do what you wanted to do. There were more eyes watching you, but here seems really relaxed which is pretty cool,” explained Jamieson.
Being the coach of the swimming club team he started in, Jamieson met the NPHS swim coach before the season started. His mom moved here ahead of time, so she talked to the coach. The coach knowing his times and ability made Jamieson feel at ease and welcome.
“I wasn’t sure what to expect when he first came to the team. A gross majority of the team have been friends or teammates competing against each other since they were little. Having someone come to North Penn from a completely different state, I did not know what to expect. However, coming from a large family, he was able to adapt to the kids very well. The one thing that Noah brings to the table is he is a very big team player. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you fall on the social spectrum; he will be a teammate of yours, and he is going to cheer for you no matter what. That has helped unite the team even more than it already was,” said Head Coach Jeff Faikish.
Jamieson explained that his old high school wasn’t that big of a swimming group, so joining that team definitely wouldn’t be easy for an outsider. Everyone at that school had their own friend group going into it and only spent time with their fellow teammates during swimming season, but he feels that everyone at NPHS is really close, and he was able to move into that group easily.
“Not knowing anybody on the team, I was kind of nervous about that, but it ended up not being that big of an issue. Before the season even started, I met some people on the water polo team. They asked me what lunch period I had and my phone number, so the next day at school they texted me at lunch telling me to come sit by them. Right from the start it was like a seamless transition and easy to make friends. It wasn’t hard to fit in here since I was a part of the swim team,” said Jamieson.
For his first time at Districts, he became even closer to the team. At his previous school, they had sectionals and states, which were very competitive due to Illinois being ranked the 3rd fastest swimming state in the country, but going into Districts at NPHS was still no easy swim.
“Districts here was a lot more fun for me, because it was split into two days and over a longer period of time. I had a lot more time in between events to relax, warm down, warm back up, and interact with the team, which was way less stress than Illinois, but I think allowed for a better competition,” said Jamieson.
Jamieson noted that he hasn’t been on this big or close of a team before, so that made districts an even better for him besides his outstanding performances. He went into the 100m fly seeded 4th and ended up coming in second. It was his best time (50.33). Despite adjusting to the differences in training, Jamieson was able to see the results at Districts of the training and from the coaches pushing the team in practice.
“Our team is extremely fortunate to have Noah on it this year. He’s a great teammate, always willing to step up in times of need, works hard at practice, and he’s always the first to hype up the team when we’re down. Without him this year, we would be at a loss in terms of relays and individual events,” said Aidan Daly.
Even better for him at districts was being on a team that pushes each other at practice everyday. Jamieson explained that going into it, his coach told him everyone was doing great and it was his turn to show up and do well, which would affect other people’s results. It was everyone else’s excitement that day that he found to be what kept him going. He has great excitement going into states. The relays are seeded high, and he didn’t expect that going into it.
“I came into this season knowing we had a new swimmer on the team that was really fast. When we saw him for the first time I could tell he could fit in just fine. He is one of those people who can calm your nerves but also be ready to step up on the block to race. He’s been training his butt off all year, and now I think we are going to see him in his prime at states,” said Sean Faikish.
At States, Jamieson’s going for the team record (49.95), which he’s pretty close to. He also wants to try to go for the Junior Nationals cut, which is 49.89. However, at States he’s not too focused about time. He’s going in seeded 5th, trying for first, and the first place time is the guy he lost to at districts. 3rd and 4th is .01 of a difference, so it will be a close race. His mentality mostly going into the race is that he knows for a fact all his teammates at States are going to do their best, and if he doesn’t do his best, he’d be the odd man out. So his biggest goal is to show up for his teammates and put the same amount of effort comparing himself to them.
“He was the big piece of a missing puzzle. He was brought here for a reason. Last year we were saying the one piece that is missing from our puzzle is a butterflier or a sprinter. He represents both of those missing pieces. We were lacking in a butterflier and 50 freestyle swimmer last year, and he can do both. It seems everything about him is a right fit,” said Coach Jeff Faikish.