Last Updated: Thu Nov 16, 2023 - 9:28PM
Patton Graziano’s journey to the pool began at a young age. He was influenced by his mom to get into swimming, with her being a longtime coach in the area.
Over the years, Graziano turned himself into a championship-caliber swimmer. He caught the attention of college coaches with his aquatic abilities, and recently made his commitment to swim for West Virginia University.
“It feels really good,” he noted of the decision. “The recruiting process, I didn’t expect to be as competitive as it was. It was definitely a big weight lifted off my shoulders.”
Between the people, coaches, the swimmers, and tradition, it was a no brainer for Graziano to pick the Mountaineers. He also liked the fact that the school isn’t too far from his home. During the recruiting process, he continued to receive assistance from a familiar voice…his mom.
“She was definitely the closest to me during the whole process,” he added. “She made it a lot less stressful. She knew it would work out the way it did in the end.”
With tutelage from his mom, both in the pool and out, Graziano has found himself a consistent winner with Penn-Trafford. He medaled in the Class 3A WPIAL swimming championships both his sophomore and junior years, capturing district gold in the 100-yard freestyle last March. He also placed fifth at states and won the Westmoreland County Coaches Association title in the same event.
“The training is the most important part,” the future Mountaineer mentioned. “The people you train around, the coaches you have, it will all impact how you will swim in big meets.”
Graziano is not swimming for the awards and medals, but enjoys the fact that it shows his hard work has benefitted him. He can also take a moment on the podium to look around at the people who have helped him get to where he is today.
Despite having his college commitment out of the way, Graziano still has more goals he wants to achieve this season for the Warriors. Performing well at the WPIAL and PIAA tournaments are a given, but earning an even higher honor is at the very top of his list.
“Making individual All-American as a senior,” he shared. “I was close last year, but didn’t quite get there. That is definitely one of my bigger goals.”