By: Natalie Fox
NEW WILMINGTON Pa –
Pat Smith is the Westminster Swim and Dive coach here at Westminster. After leading the Women’s Swim and Dive team to PAC Victory last season in 2019, he is now inducted into the Titan Sports Hall of Fame. I sat down with Pat on a one-on-one interview to see what it meant to him to be inducted as a coach and a former student.
“It’s certainly a great honor I obviously have been at Westminster now for like the last eleven years so it’s cool for me when I get to see the other swimmers had a few Summer to get honors like that the last couple years or so I’m now that I’ve been gone for more than eight years that’s the criteria given some of my teammates have been recognized lately Coach Klamut was recognized last year or a couple of years ago and it’s a really cool and you know a lot of credit to my teammates really for making me better”, Pat said.
Smith gives the credit to his current team his past teammates while he was in school and his past roommate who was also a team member.
“You know Ryan Trunk was my roommate all 4 years of college um he ended up graduating from Westminster um same year as me 2007 and uh he was Second in the NCAA’s his senior year, he qualified for nationals in 3 out of his 4 years I think he had five or six all Americans but you know really he kind of would challenge me, I think especially when you’re roommates with someone you see them a lot obviously and it’s not always you know, ‘when the lights are on’ so to speak, so you know some of those conversations I can remember just like you know laying in our beds living in Eich or in the townhouses that kind of stuff so you know. Ryan really kind of pushed me I think and I remember he just used to have a saying and it was ‘just how many push-ups did you do today?’, and he never really talked about times or different goals like that it was just like kinda that speak to yourself kind of mindset. And so now to kind of have the same honors as him that’s really cool you know. I love history I love Westminster, obviously I’m a huge part of the program so I know all of the names and I know what they’ve accomplished and you know kind of just to be mentioned with them is really cool. I’m honored, I’m humbled, I’m excited to celebrate.”
Being inducted into the Titan Sports Hall of Fame falls on a specific level within pats accomplishments.
Pat adds, “Swimming and coaching are really separate, you know, I think when you coach to be able to see your athletes achieve their goals is away more rewarding feeling. I think we’ve been fortunate the last three seasons all the years that I’ve been the head coach our men have won championships 2 out of those years and our women won last year so I think just pure joy you get to see with your athletes, especially last year with our women not having won the conference in 12 years and it was just such raw emotion. You know this honor kind of takes me back. I haven’t competed and I guess 12 years so you kind of forget about those things.”
Pat reflects on his Collegiate swimming career here at 1 answer and explain what it means to him to be inducted alongside path teammates and current coaches.
“You know to be able to share it with my friends and my teammates you know. A lot of them are coming back. Emily Dressler, I swam with her she’s going to get inducted, Courtney Hurt I coached her, you know, so it’s kind of cool to put all of those years of swimming history together but I don’t know I think as an individual kind of accomplishment like I said it’s really cool but I wouldn’t be where I am without the people that I have. You know my wife for instance, I swam in the same lane with her every day. You know the motivation she gave me when we were just kind of dating in college and now you know obviously we have a totally separate life and a family and everything and so it’s been cool to kind of re-live some of those maybe competitive moments. As I’ve kind of thought about it here this past month or two since we found out and as I mentioned before just to be able to celebrate with my friends and my family is going to be really special.”
Pat is excited to take on this new journey with his new honors.