Story and photos by Nick Nahas
Noah Manera has had a love for the sport of swimming since he was just seven years old. “I love racing,” said Manera. “I really like just getting up on the blocks and having fun, going all out and competing against other swimmers.”
Manera, now 17 and a senior in high school, has had a decorated career in swimming so far. He was named to the USA Swimming Scholastic All American Team two years in a row (2014-2016 seasons,) while qualifying for the Speedo Winter Junior Nationals in the 200 Butterfly, which will be held in Columbus, Ohio in December.
At Bloomingdale High School he was named to the 2015 Tribune All-Hillsborough County Swim Team — First Team for the 100 Butterfly (9th place finish at 4A State Meet,) the 2015 Tampa Bay Time’s All-Tampa Bay Boys Team — Second Team for 100 Butterfly (9th place finish at 4A State Meet,) and in 2015 he broke the Bloomingdale record in the 200 Individual Medley relay along with his fellow teammates Nick Cannon, Noel Lopez and Kaden Miller.
“I can depend on him,” said Eva Applebee, head coach of the Bloomingdale High School Swim Team. “Noah is one of those quiet warriors that does everything that you need him to do and he gives 200 percent. He never complains, he never gives you a hard time when you ask his opinion, he thinks and considers before he speaks and gives good input. He’s a coach’s dream.” Manera swims year-round, and according to Applebee, his best stroke is the butterfly. The 200 Butterfly is his best event, the same as his role model Michael Phelps. That is the event that qualified him for the USA Swimming Scholastic All American Team. His goal for the high school season is to make it back to states again. He would like to make it back into the finals for two events, the 100 Butterfly and the 200 Freestyle, and hopefully be on a good relay team that can compete as well.
Manera has a bright future, not only in the pool, but in the classroom as well. He said that he is currently speaking with several colleges about scholarships and a chance to swim at the next level. He wants to major in aerospace engineering. One day, we may even see him in the Olympics. “If I get on a college team and I keep training hard, one day I would like to see myself at the Olympic trials,” he said. “We’ll see how that goes, that would be a long-term goal of mine to get an Olympic qualification.”