Not unlike other top swim programs, the Munster Mustangs are like a family.
They know each other better than they know themselves.
"I love it," Munster senior Laine Sroge said. "We're really a close group of kids, because we've been swimming together for so long. During the week, I'm with them more than I'm with my family."
Sroge, who swims the 500 free and the 100 fly, plays a key role for the Mustangs. She might not make the headlines, but they wouldn't be a perennial favorite to win sectionals and make a run at a top-10 state finish without swimmers like Sroge.
"She's one of those kids who's not one of the top, top kids, but she always trains with them," Munster coach Matt Pavlovich said. "She's a very good practice swimmer."
Sroge helped Munster beat Hobart 146-39 last week as part of the winning 200 free relay.
"She's one of those kids who has added to our depth and helps us win dual meets," Pavlovich said. "She's scored at sectionals for us in the past."
Munster won its own sectional last year and finished eighth in the state. The Mustangs are looking to do that again this season.
"We're hoping to win sectionals again," Sroge said. "It's going to be another battle with Crown Point again this year. And we want to get top 10 in state."
Pavlovich said Sroge brings more to the program with her positive attitude and outgoing personality that's even more valuable outside the pool. She helps with the swimming lessons the team gives in the offseason for the community, which is a big fundraiser.
"She's my go-to girl with the team," he said. "She's really good with kids and special needs kids, those with autism and such. She really excels in those areas. She's got the personality for that."
Sroge has been teaching lessons since she was a freshman.
"I usually help with the disabled children and others with disabilities," she said. "It just makes me feel good inside. When you see them learning how to swim, it's nice to realize you helped them."
Pavlovich said Sroge is beyond her years in maturity.
"She just a real great kid to have in this very different aspect of our program," he said.
Sroge wants to continue helping people by studying nursing in college.
"Hopefully, in pediatrics because I really love kids," she said.