By Kirk Stewart
The Bryant Barracudas swim team has a new head coach. His name is Onat Tungac and he is from Turkey.
Tungac believes his mission is to help grow the popularity of swimming as a sport. Originally from Izmir, Turkey, he has an impressive resumé. Even as a youngster, “Coach ‘O’” was swimming competitively with the Fenerbahce Swimming Club in his home country.
He’s an eight-time member of the Turkish National Team and represented Turkey at the 2005 World University Games.
Tungac went on to swim for Henderson State University in Arkadelphia in 2004 until he graduated in 2008. There, he was a nine-time Athletic All-American, eight-time Honorable Mention All-American and is a swimming record holder for HSU.[more]
The Barracudas figures to benefit from his wide range of experience, talent and understanding of the sport. He will work with the Saline County Racers as well. He is passionate about swimming and about life – that passion will certainly spill over to the young swimmers.
“We are very happy how the team was looking even though it was the first practice,” said the new coach. “Coach David [Degeus] and I have high expectations for this team. As coaches, our goal is to help our kids to understand the values like dedication, determination, sportsmanship, teamwork, leadership, self-confidence. We believe that swimming is one of the greatest sports and it prepares individuals for every aspect of their lives. We are here to achieve these goals together while having fun and enjoying the summer time. We appreciate all the parent support we have as well as the city of Bryant which provides us the opportunity to have this great program.”
For more information about the Barracudas including registration through May 29, go to www.salinecountyswimteam.com. The first meet will be Saturday, June 6.