Lubbock teen qualifies for 2017 Deaflympics - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Lubbock teen qualifies for 2017 Deaflympics

Nickolas Roman, qualified for 2017 Deaflympics (Source: KCBD Video) Nickolas Roman, qualified for 2017 Deaflympics (Source: KCBD Video)
Stephanie Roman, Nickolas' mom (Source: KCBD Video) Stephanie Roman, Nickolas' mom (Source: KCBD Video)
Trey Hayes, Nickolas' swim coach (Source: KCBD Video) Trey Hayes, Nickolas' swim coach (Source: KCBD Video)
Nikolas swimming at the Pete Ragus Aquatic Center (Source: KCBD Video) Nikolas swimming at the Pete Ragus Aquatic Center (Source: KCBD Video)
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

A Lubbock teen has qualified to compete in the 2017 Deaflympics.

But, before Nickolas Roman does, he's going to use his swimming talents to compete at the collegiate level.

"Try something new," Nickolas Roman says. "I wanted to try swimming."

His mother, Stephanie Roman, says he started swimming in the 7th grade.

"In middle school, they came out to promote their swimming and he brought home the paperwork and we said, okay, let's do this," she recalls.

For the 18-year-old, swimming is not just a hobby, but a passion.

But, there's something different about him that you can't quite see.

Nickolas was born deaf.

But of course, his inability to hear makes no difference in how quickly he can swim.

"He has made it a goal of his to continue doing what he's doing and practice as hard as he can to see where he's going to go next," Stephanie Roman says.

The Coronado High School graduate is not only breaking records, but he has also qualified to compete in the 2017 Deaflympics, an International Olympic Committee-sanctioned event, where deaf athletes compete.

"I'm really excited," Nickolas says.

His coach, Trey Hayes, says he's worked with the swimmer for the past two years.

"For swimming, this is the super bowl," Hayes says. "This is the world series. This is the biggest thing you can do. For him to get a chance, number one to go, but another chance to represent the United States, that's a pretty big honor."

But he doesn't just have his sights on winning gold.

Soon he'll be starting college as a freshman swimmer at Gallaudet University, a university in Washington, D.C. for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.

"I'm just proud of his effort," Hayes says. "I'm glad he's really making a commitment to do this and we couldn't be prouder of him."

While the swimmer's mom says she is just beaming with pride.

"He's doing what he wants to do and as a deaf child, a deaf person, he's proven he can do it, just like everybody else," she says.

Copyright 2016 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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