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Local coach roots for Olympic swimmer

Many watching the Olympics Monday night were rooting for 45-year-old Dana Torres. But former Webster coach Darrell Byerts was rooting for the swimmer in lane two,  Kara Lynn Joyce.

Joyce started her swimming career in Rochester, competing at Eastridge and later for Webster. As she competed Monday night, her former coach, Byerts, was glued to his television as Joyce qualified for her third Olympics, coming in second place.

Byerts said, "She had a great work ethic in the pool."

Byerts coached Joyce her freshmen and sophomore years and was a swimming coach for 36 years at Webster. He says that Joyce's work ethic was unmatched.

"Byerts said, "Her Freshman year, going into sectionals, she ended up falling at home and broke her arm,  which we didn't know in the preliminaries, and she had such a desire to win ,she came in 4th in sectionals and 5th in the 100th."

Her six foot frame and desire to win made her a favorite to watch for Byerts. 

Byerts said, "She had a natural stroke feet. What a great kicker. She had heart to dedicate herself to what it would take to progress."

Joyce's records for the 50 and 100 freestyle still stand, but Joyce just missed a state record due to a technicality. She left Rochester in her junior year for Ann Arbor, and now she is a four-time silver medalist. This will be her third Olympics, and you can bet her former coach will be cheering her on.

Byert said, "It's exciting, it's exciting to have been apart of her life her progression as she moved through Eastridge, Webster then Michigan and Georgia."

Joyce was emotional after Monday night's race, she said she shed tears of shock and joy and a lot of happiness. The U.S. Swim team will head to Knoxville, Tennessee this weekend for training camp before heading to London.

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