Occasionally, Dylan Macejko will take a look at his schedule and wonder if he made a giant mistake. But that thought quickly fades away for the Connetquot senior.
Not only is Macejko a standout in the pool for the Connetquot/East Islip boys swimming team, he volunteers his time in and out of school, puts in hours with the Connetquot youth swimming program and said he found out in October that he’d be the valedictorian of his class.
“There are times I’m at the school and I look at the list of things I have to do and I’m like ‘What did I get myself into?,’ ” Macejko said with a laugh. “But it’s nice to know at the end of the day when it’s all set and done that I can go put my head on a pillow and relax because I know it will work out better in the long run.”
His Saturday mornings are a little different than your average high-school student. Macejko typically wakes up at 5 a.m., trains and practices for four hours before spending another two hours volunteering coaching swimmers in the youth program, he said.
“During the week, it’s hard to find the time balancing school,” Macejko said. “I don’t care if I’m up until 1 a.m. I’m either training at the pool, coaching at the pool, doing homework or going to bed. That’s my life.”
And it’s worked out well for Macejko, as he led Connetquot/East Islip to a 92-88 victory over host Ward Melville Tuesday in a Suffolk I meet. The senior won both of his individual events — the 50-yard freestyle (23.03) and 100 butterfly (55.78).
“He has that work ethic,” coach Alex Scichilone said. “Nothing stops him. He goes for what he wants and he doesn’t stop until he gets there. He’s an impressive young man for sure.”
Macejko and James Llewellyn were the two double-winners Tuesday, as Llewellyn won the 200 IM (2:10.03) and 100 backstroke (1:00.63), crediting Macejko’s leadership.
“He’s a big inspiration,” said Llewellyn, a sophomore from East Islip. “He’s always looking out for us. We’re all very grateful to have him, honestly.”
Macejko has led Connetquot/East Islip to a 6-1 mark, as he hopes to swim and study computer science at Binghamton as a self-proclaimed “math nerd.” But before college, the senior has his eyes set on performing his best at the county and state championship meets.
“I’ve been on the varsity team since the eighth grade…now being a senior, this is the big thing, this is the big finale,” Macejko said. “So might as well make it last, so every swim I’ve been doing up to then, I’m pushing myself and I know I’m going to get there and give it all I got.”