Dangol makes it to USA Junior Rankings

Posted on Feb 08 2022

Aasish Dangol in action while swimming for Albany Armada Aquatics, LLC. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)

Former Saipan resident Aasish Dangol made it to the USA Swimming Junior Rankings and was previously currently No. 8 in the 12-and-under age group.

Currently swimming for the Albany Armada Aquatics, LLC, the now 13-year-old finished eighth in the SCY 400m individual medley of the 2021 PC AAA Intrasquad Distance Day with a time of 4:26:36 to get his national ranking.

Dangol, who like his older sister Ashley used to swim for Tsunami Saipan Swimming Center, didnt make a big deal out of being nationally ranked.

“I’m not really sure how it feels to be ‘nationally ranked.’ I didn’t gain any fame or anything. I feel the same, the only difference it made was that now I want to push myself harder to rank higher and in more events,” he said.

Dangol said on the lead up to the 2021 PC AAA Intrasquad Distance Day, he wasn’t able to join many swimming meets because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“But in the meet I did right before I turned 13, I placed eighth in the nation in 400 IM for 12-year-olds and 99th all time for the 11-12 age group. I also placed 13th in the nation for the 200m fly in the 11-12 age group. Now that I am 13, I am not ranked nearly as high for the 13-14 age group, but I am working my way up.”
recently qualified for a meet called Sectionals, which is a meet with very few 13-year-olds.

“It was in LA, and I went for a team relay. While there, I qualified for the 200m butterfly, missed the 400m IM by 0.5 seconds, and nearly qualified in the 200 breast. On the weekend of the 29th, I went to a zone swim meet and was the top qualifier for an all-star team,” he said.

Dangol thanked his parents and sister, Tsunami Saipan coach Hiroyuki Kimura, and all the teammates he swam with for all the success he’s so far achieved in the sport.

“I would like to dedicate my progress to everybody who helped me get here. They all played a part in my swimming.”

Dangol followed his sister Ashley when she picked swimming as the sport she wanted to learn growing up on Saipan.

Aasish Dangol said he misses everything on Saipan from the banana trees to his friends. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)

“She started to swim at a young age, and being the younger brother that I am, I followed suit. Now, eight years later, I love the sport that I do, and can’t think of what I would be without it.”

He said Kimura definitely gave him a great start in swimming, especially in hard events like the 400m IM.

“The hard practices there and then the technique work here made me a strong swimmer who is now improving my strokes, which I think is really good. However, while swimming on Saipan, I was taught a lot more than just how to swim. Coach Hiro taught me how to be punctual, taught me dedication, taught me about hard work, and helped me become me. I got to experience things I’ll never experience here like meets in Japan or swimming around tanks in the ocean. Tsunami Saipan showed me how a team can come together, be loud, fun, exciting, and have teammates who push each other.”

Dangol currently trains eight times a week at the Albany Aquatic Center in Albany, California. There, the practices are technique-based and workouts are focused on strokes.

“We have dry land twice a week and have goal-setting once a week. Goal-setting is where you set goals and talk about how you should swim your races.”

Asked what he misses most about Saipan, Dangol’s reply is: “Its simplicity, my friends, and just Saipan in general. When I can, I would want to go back and visit Saipan. I can’t pick one specific thing I miss most, I miss everything from the banana trees to my friends.”

Mark Rabago | Associate Editor
Mark Rabago is the Associate Editor of Saipan Tribune. Contact him at Mark_Rabago@saipantribune.com
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