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Oh brother! Bismarck Demon boys swim team features six sets of brothers

Published: Feb. 16, 2021 at 2:48 PM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The Bismarck High School boys swim team is a brotherhood. And we mean that quite literally.

There are six sets of brothers on the team of 26 swimmers and divers this year.

This is Josiah Penn’s last season in the pool. The Bismarck High senior been swimming for the Demons since seventh grade and for the past two years, his twin brother Micah has been by his side.

“He’s way better than me,” Micah admitted with a smile.

“He really helps a lot with the younger guys,” said Josiah, who is team captain this year.

Many of those younger guys are brothers, too.

“It feels like a family,” added Micah.

The twins are just two of the 12 brothers on this team.

“Close to half our team is brothers,” said BHS head boys swim coach Cale Schafer. “It seems to me, when a family gets involved in the sport, they stay committed to it because they see what a good tight knit group of athletes it is. The camaraderie is great.

The camaraderie often leads to a little goofing around, even underwater. But when it’s time to focus, these brothers are all business. None of them want to be beat by their brother.

“It’s really fun watching them go head-to-head because you can see that they have that little extra push,” said Schafer.

That brother connection has made this season a special one for the Penn brothers, and for every swimmer and diver on the Demon roster. Because this season, this group of brothers has made a splash and formed a bond thicker than the water they swim in.

Coach Schafer knows all about that extra push brothers provide; he swam with two of his own brothers in high school.

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