Desert Dolphins Gainsville Florida 2009

Finalist In 4 Events 2009 US Age Group Championships

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Desert Dolphin Athletes: finalist in 4 events at the 2009 US Age Group Championships in Gainesville, Florida.

The athletes for the Arizona Desert Dolphin Synchronized Swimming team are back at it again! Sixteen athletes just returned from the largest synchronized swimming competition in the world. With over 1000 athletes, 16 doesn t sound like much, but the Desert Dolphin athletes made a big splash and brought home new titles.

Nine athletes made up the 11-12 Age Group team. The team routine was comprised of music from the Disney-Pixar film Wall-E and walked about with a 5th place finish.

Three other swimmers made up the duet and trio events, the trio took 4th place and the duet 5th.

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All eight athletes competed together in the team event, finishing in 10th place. Competing against 48 other teams, spanning the entire country, and ending up in the top ten is quite an accomplishment. Head Coach, Lorette Haynes is proud of her athletes, Synchronized swimming is not an easy sport to master. It breeds perfectionists, and perfection is something we strive for in the girls. We set a goal at the beginning of the season to qualify to Nationals and place in the top half. We did it! We actually exceeded our goal, and I couldn t be prouder.

Olivia Larsen, 12 from Mesa was the team s alternate. Being an alternate is a difficult position on the team, with learning and memorizing who has which counts. But even though it s difficult in my opinion it is also the most fun. Larsen joined the Desert Dolphins in December of 2008 as a Recreational team member. She quickly was able to catch on and move up to the Competitive Team. Alternates are usually the hardest positions on the team, with little or no glory. Olivia s hard work and sacrifice helped us along our way to a top eight finish, Haynes said.


Synchronized Swimming has recently been deemed the ultimate sport. Combining perhaps the most difficult aspects of other sports, athletes train in numerous other sports to be successful in synchronized swimming. Watch a routine and you ll see how gymnastics, dance, cheer, water polo, speed swimming, figure skating and so many more play a part in synchronized swimming.

The Desert Dolphin team is now on break for the remaining of the summer, and will start up again September 1st. The team has numerous programs, fit for anyone who wants to give it a try, including a free trial class in August, a perfect opportunity for girls to get their feet wet and see if Synchro is for them. Anyone needing information should contact the team. The team is based in the East Mesa, Gilbert and Queen Creek area, however, contact Coach Becky at for information on their team or any other teams in the valley.

Becky Thompson
Arizona Desert Dolphins
Head Coach
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