By VAN HOLLAND
Cameron Anderson has worked hard since the age of six to become one of the most dominating swimmers in the state. He has lots of goals he wants to accomplish and wants to add to the ones he achieved this season.
As a sophomore this year, Anderson went undefeated in the pool during the individual events he participated in. He is usually the first off the block and first at touching the wall after the final lap the majority of the time.
All of the hard work paid off for him in February when he won two NCHSAA state swimming titles in separate freestyle events.
"It is such a big honor for me to have such an achievement that I have worked hard for," Anderson said with a smile as he donned his championship ring. "I work hard year around to become the best that I can."
Thursday, Anderson was presented his championship ring in front of his teammates. As he opened the box, he and his teammates were in shock at the sight of the gold ring.
Anderson received the ring, because he won the 100-yard freestyle event with a time of 47.55 and finished tied for first in the 50-yard freestyle event with a time of 21.76.
Anderson has become a very prolific swimmer in the state and has made a name for himself. Anderson has worked hard towards his goals and has accomplished a lot in such a short amount of time in his high school career.
After going undefeated this year, Anderson is hungry for more. He wants the same next season and more. To get more, he will stay in the pool and continue to work on getting faster in both events during the offseason and during the summer months where he swims for the Tarboro Swim Club.
"I want to be undefeated again next season and be another gold medalist," Anderson said. "I have to stay in the pool and practice during the summer to get that goal accomplished."
To get better, Anderson practices anywhere from three to four times a week. Each time he gets in the water, it isn't a short or quick practice. He stays in the water for at least two hours at the time and works on cutting down on his personal best times.
Coach Michelle Harris said she knew one day, she would coach a state champion, because all of her swimmers work hard. She knew Anderson was one of the swimmers that had a great shot at winning the title, but she didn't know it was going to be this quick.
"I am so happy for him," Harris said. "I am here just to coach and observe. This couldn't be possible without his summer coaches and the ones who have helped guide him in the right direction through the years."
Harris said she attributes a lot of the swimmers success to the Tarboro Swim Club.
"Cameron comes from a family of swimmers," Harris said. "He has great work ethics and a family that supports him."
According to Harris, Anderson is self-driven and she feels blessed to be able to have a swimmer like him on her team.
When Anderson took to his lane to swim in the finals, Harris had faith in Anderson and knew he had a very good chance of winning his events. He didn't let her down as he rolled past his opponents.
In the 50-yard freestyle event, Anderson, who had already beaten Carrboro's Justin Morrell in the regionals, was the fastest off of the block. Anderson led the way down the first stretch of the event and was the first swimmer to turn off of the wall. As he got towards the finish and came up out of the water he got a big surprise. He and Morrell had tied with exact times of 21.76. This was the first time that Anderson had ever been involved in this type of finish.
During the 100-yard freestyle finals, Anderson was going to make sure he dominated the event and was going to be the champion. He excelled during that event. When he blasted off of the starting blocks, he was the first to turn and the first to the wall to finish and had beaten Morrell by .45 second to capture his second title of the day.
Anderson is going to be a force to be reckoned with in the next two years. He is determined to become one of the best swimmers in the state and has a passion for what he does. He continues to work hard every time he touches the water.