YMCA Swim Team Wins Championship
The team has now won four state championships.
After losing nearly 30 seniors last year, the Somerset Valley YMCA swim team knew it would be tough to repeat its successes from the past two years, when it captured the Y state championship title.
On March 11, after some great swims and an amazing nine individual and relay wins for a swimmer from Hillsborough, the team clinched the NJYMCA swimming title for the third consecutive year.
The state championship meet was held at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania., on March 9, 10 and 11.
The momentum started with an outstanding performance by the team’s 12 & Under age group, which competed in Ocean County on Feb. 24 through Feb. 26. In that meet, the 9/10 girls won second place, while the 11/12 girls captured first place.
“I was very impressed with the lead that the age 12 & Under crew gave us and that put us in a great position going into our meet in Lancaster,” said head coach, Matt Donovan.
“The younger swimmers were very excited and had some great swims," added coach Brian Greene, who is the 12 & Under head age group coach.
When they headed to Lancaster, the 86 members of the age 13 & Older team knew they needed to take the lead to once again emerge as champions.
“The 13/14 girls and boys both had some amazing swims and won first place,” said Rob Rynone, 13/14 age group coach. “I was extremely proud of their accomplishments.”
The 15/18 boys also captured first place.
“We knew we were in the running and we really wanted to try to win. We knew we had to swim fast,” said Victor Luo, of Bridgewater, the team co-captain.
Among the first place winners in Lancaster were Brad Zdroik, of Hillsborough, who won seven individual events and two relays in the 13/14 age group. Other first place winners included Julieyanna Parker, of Hillsborough, in the 13/14 age group, and Jessica Ambrose, also in the 13/14 age group.
The team also took five first places in relays in Lancaster.
“Our win showed the strength and depth of the entire team. Every swimmer contributed to our bringing home the banner,” said Donovan.
With the girls and boys combined scores of 3,075, the team placed first overall out of a total of 25 teams, and increased their total points scored by 410 over last year’s championship points.
“We thought we were going to have a really hard time after losing all those seniors. When we found out we won, we were so happy,” said Rachel Stoddard, of Hillsborough, a team co-captain.
Under the leadership of Donovan, who became head coach in 2000, team SVY has been the recipients of the New Jersey YMCA State Championship Title in 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2012.
To learn more about Team SVY, visit the website.