Natalie Edge is one of Utah's top young newcomers.
Dec. 5, 2007
At the age of 7, Natalie Edge watched her older sister Emily playing water polo. She turned to her dad and told him that she wanted to play water polo too. Her dad, Rick Edge - a former University of Utah football player - told her that she had to join a swim team first.
In her very first swim meet, Edge was clueless to what was really going on, she recalls. She simply knew she just had to dive in when the buzzer sounded and start swimming. As she belly flopped into the water, her journey toward joining a water polo team took a detour. Instead, it was the beginning of Edge's career as one of the best swimmers in the state of Utah.
A native of South Jordan, Edge led her Kearns High School swim team in the 2007 state championships, winning the 50-yard freestyle (23.65), 100-yard freestyle (50.77) and the 200-yard freestyle relay. She was named a high school All-American in the 50- and 100-yard freestyle and 200 free relay by the National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association. In 2006, Edge was the Utah State Class 5A champion in the 50- and 100-yard freestyle and 200 free relay. The most telling indicator of her talent in the pool was recording the second-fastest time in the nation in the 50 free as a high school senior.
The University of Utah freshman has continued her success into her collegiate career. She has been a solid addition to the Utes and has given her team some impressive times in the freestyle events. Recording a 24.19 clocking in the 50 free, she led the Utes against Denver and Arkansas in a swim meet earlier this season. She is determined to keep working hard and to improve her times.
"I hope to go 49.5 in my 100 freestyle and 22.9 in my 50 freestyle," Edge said. "This year's team needs to stay motivated and continue working hard. We have to stay disciplined when swimming, to keep our technique clean and, as coach would say, `sexy.'"
Edge knows that in order to accomplish these goals she needs to get better every day by constantly raising the standard for herself and becoming stronger. Her coaches and teammates help, pushing her to become better and being there for her. Six a.m. workouts are never easy and having to return in the afternoon for another practice is hard. But having your team depending on you makes it easier and worth it in the end, said Edge.
"I understand better in that situation than others, because I just read lips instead of trying to hear the coach's voice," Edge said.
Of course, the coaches may want to take heed that even when they are out of earshot, Edge might just have an idea what they're talking about.
"What's amusing is that if the coaches are talking far away, or if a quiet conversation is going on, if I can see their lips, I know what they're saying," she said.
Even if Edge caught the coaching staff talking about her, her early success would probably mean the conversation was about looking forward to seeing how much she will improve over the course of her Ute career.