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Q&A

Michelle Brune is in her first year as the head coach of the Glenwood Springs girls swimming team. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Brune is now an English teacher at Basalt High School and has lived in the valley for six years. Name: Michelle BruneCoach of the Glenwood Springs girls swimming teamAge: 34Where did you coach before?I started my coaching at Bonita High (LaVerne, Calif.) as an assistant while in college. In grad school, I moved to San Jose, Calif., and was the girls varsity coach at Newark Memorial High (Newark, Calif.) for two years. I then moved back to LaVerne and was the Bonita head coach. In California, the girls and boys teams are at the same time, so I coached both. It was approximately a 50-person team. My first year the guys won league and the next my girls won.Why did you take this job?There were a lot of factors that went into my decision. The first was I missed swimming. I hadnt coached since I left California, so it had been a few years. When the position opened, I was intrigued. Also, I just moved to Glenwood from Basalt. Before this year it would have been a logistical nightmare to coach. I have to admit that the strong, successful reputation of this team really attracted me, too.Three meets into the season, what has it been like to walk into a successful program, with many exceptional athletes, including an All-American in Emily McDonald?To be honest, it has made the transition pretty easy. They have strong traditions and routines, and I have tried to fit into their establishment as much as possible. I cant deny how fun it is to go to the first meet and watch girls make state already.What is the number one goal for this team for this season?A strong showing at state. We have so many successful swimmers that it is possible to have a high-placed finish there and I would love to see that happen. As a coach, what do you want your swimmers to learn from you?I try to instill a work ethic without shoving it down their throats. If they can learn the importance of everyone doing well, not just a few, but everyone, I will be happy. If everyone works hard in practice, then everyone gets faster. Developing our depth is high on my agenda, and in doing that, everyone on the team benefits. We will be a strong force when our B and C swimmers beat others A swimmers.


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