This article and photo were originally published in the Salisbury Daily Times.
SALISBURY – (June 21, 2012) – Imagine a high-schooler trying to score a touchdown against the Ravens defense, or stepping into the batters' box against Washington Nationals flame-throwing pitcher Stephen Strasburg.
Rising James M. Bennett sophomore Alice Treuth won't be staring down a 100 mph fastball or standing across from Ray Lewis, she will be swimming in the same pool as Michael Phelps and all of the other top swimmers in the United States next week as she competes for a spot on the U.S. Olympic swim team.
(She is daughter of Dr. Margarita S. Treuth, a professor of physical therapy at UMES.)
Treuth, who posted a qualifying time for the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials earlier this year while competing at the National Club Swimming Association Junior Nationals meet, will swim in the 200 meter backstroke along with 200 of the other fastest aqua-athletes in the country for one of two spots on the Olympic team in the event.
Treuth. 15, said she is very excited for the competition, which will kick off in Omaha, Nebraska on June 25 and run through July 2, but is trying to temper her expectations.
"I feel like I'm dreaming," Treuth, who completed the 200 meter backstroke in a time of 2:17.79 to qualify for the Olympic Trials, said. "It's a little bit scary to think I'm going to compete in the same meet as all the fastest people in the whole country. I'm really nervous and kind of scared too, but I am excited."
Treuth, who swims for the Coastal Aquatic swim team out of Salisbury, said that just qualifying for the meet has been a big boost to her self confidence.
"Making the Olympic Trials has definitely motivated me a lot," Treuth said. "It has made me realize that I can accomplish all that I want to. That I can work hard and be the best that I can be and make meets that I never thought I could make."
While it is in the realm of possibilities, the swimmer said that she hasn't spent to much time day-dreaming about what it would be like to walk into the opening ceremonies of the London Olympics wearing the red, white, and blue.
"I want to be pretty realistic, because there are millions of people that swim and even just making this meet is dream fulfilling," Treuth said. "But if I were to make the team, I don't even know. I would probably be beyond ecstatic. It's pretty hard to imagine just like making the Olympic Trials is."
Treuth said one of the best things about qualifying for the meet is getting the chance to watch and be in the presence of some of the best swimmers in the world.
"I'm kind of shy so I don't know if I would (go up and talk to them) but I will definitely be in awe of them," Treuth said. "I'm really looking forward to seeing Missy Franklin, because I think she is going to be like the new Michael Phelps, and all of the other great swimmers that I have never gotten a chance to watch in person."