Sugar Land’s first summer swim team has finished its 2017 season 4-1.
The Sugar Land Sharks Swim Team has a long and rich history of serving the recreational needs of the youth of Sugar Land. For more than 44 years, their home has been the City of Sugar Land pool, located in the City Park near the corner of Main and 7th Streets. The pool was originally constructed in 1967.
The Sugar Land Lions Club and Imperial Sugar Company’s Kempner Foundation raised the $35,000 needed to construct a 50-meter by 50-yard Olympic-size pool. A swim team was formed shortly thereafter; that team has been in continuous operation ever since, and today is known as the Sugar Land Sharks.
The Sugar Land Sharks was one of the charter members of the Southwest Houston Recreational Swim League, along with the Quail Valley Dolphins, the Sugar Creek Gators, and the Maplewood Marlins. The League was formed in 1973 to consolidate the many community and subdivision swim teams in the southwest Houston area, to standardize team rules, and formalize competition between teams.
The Sharks have always been proud to offer participation on the team to all Sugar Land residents, not just club members or residents of a particular neighborhood. The team is grateful for decades of sponsorship and support from the Sugar Land Lions Club.
Ask any team member what makes the Sharks special and you are likely to hear the words “summer family.” Multiple generations have enjoyed a sense of community with the team and have made lifelong friendships around the “Shark Pool.” They now have a number of children of former Sharks swimming for the team.
The Sharks head coach is Katie Anselmo, who has coached since 2008. Anselmo has also been the head swim coach at Kempner High School since 2000. Anselmo is a professional coach with NCAA and USA Swimming experience. Under Anselmo, Kempner has had numerous swimmers win Division I NCAA scholarships, a state champion, as well as district and regional swimmers of the year. In addition, she is a two-time district coach of the year.
Anselmo is a true Sugar Land girl. She graduated from Clements High School in 1996 and went on to Ohio Wesleyan University where she also swam. She joined Kempner after her 2000 graduation.