New Trier senior wins World Cup relay

Senior Carly Novelline participated in the FINA World Cup this October


Carly Novelline

Novelline competing at the FINA World Cup in Berlin ,Germany in October

For senior Carly Novelline, the fall swim season has gone rather swimmingly.

From Oct. 1-3, Novelline competed for Team USA in the Fédération Internationale De Natation (FINA) World Cup in Berlin and from Oct. 7-9, she competed in the Budapest leg. In the Berlin leg, Novelline was part of the relay team that took first place. She also competed in several other events, including the 100 freestyle and 50 backstroke, the latter of which she finaled (top 8) in during the Budapest leg.

The FINA World Cup has four legs, two of which Novelline’s team went to. The four legs are all the same, and there is no overall winner. The first meet that Novelline attended was in Berlin, and the second was in Budapest. Both meets featured the same events.

Novelline said that she didn’t expect to do so well at the meet and had no idea that their relay would even medal. 

“I was the anchor, and when the third person was going, I saw that we were in the top three, but it was pretty close. It was crazy, no one knew that we were going to win, no one knew what to expect, and when we won, it was so cool. Everyone in the stands was cheering.”

I think as a swimmer, you could make a case that she is perhaps the best swimmer, boy or girl, that New Trier has ever had.”

— Robert Guy

Novelline said that swimming in a meet like this was a new experience for her, since it was her first international meet and she met a lot of new people on her team.

“There was not a lot of pressure, which I really liked. I was swimming to swim, and have fun with everyone else.”

Novelline says that her experiences swimming for New Trier in the fall and for her club team during the rest of the year have been very different.

“It’s more individual with club [swimming,], you’re more swimming for yourself instead of a big team. At meets and relays team scores aren’t as important. You’re just swimming to get the best times for yourself. During the high school season, you’re swimming for your team. You don’t really pay attention to anyone’s individual scores,” said Novelline.

One of Novelline’s New Trier teammates, Jane Sanderson, has known Carly since 8th grade and has been on Varsity with her since freshman year. They swim for different club teams, but compete against each other at meets. Sanderson says that Novelline is very driven and always does her best.

“She just has a great presence on the pool deck, and she can work hard and be a lot of fun to be around.”

Novelline’s New Trier coach, Robert Guy, says that she has been a successful swimmer since she came to New Trier and can swim most events.  As a sophomore, Carly was the state champion in the 100-meter backstroke.

“She also was part of a relay that set a state record, also as a sophomore in 2019, and the team was second overall in the state. Her freshman year, she swam the 50 [freestyle] and the 100 [freestyle], and finaled in both of those.”

Guy says that Novelline is a “tremendous asset” to the New Trier team, and that she is at her most competitive when her competition is at its highest.

“I think as a swimmer, you could make a case that she is perhaps the best swimmer, boy or girl, that New Trier has ever had. I think that her experience at Olympic Trials this summer and her experience on the National Junior Team this fall has been evidence of that.”

Novelline has attended other high-profile meets in the past, including this summer’s Olympic Trials in Omaha. She has also been to TYR Proseries qualifying meets throughout the year, swimming against pro swimmers who have made Olympic and National teams.

“The Olympic Trials [meet] was a good one to prepare me as well because there were a lot of fast people at that meet.”

Her performance at Olympic Trials relative to other 18 and under swimmers qualified her to swim for the Junior Nationals team. To qualify, a swimmer had to be in the top two in their event.

Even after winning the FINA World Cup Relay, Novelline still has more meets to train for.

“The next thing is, when I get back to club [swimming], I’m going to try to do some more of those bigger meets like the TYR Proseries. There’s another qualifying meet in April, and that’s to qualify for worlds, so I’m going to train for that.”