The Ridgewood swim team is ready for a great season this year, with ninety-six people signed up to participate. Two large changes have occurred that deviate from the team’s typical routine of past years. Mr. Cook, the longtime coach for the program, has replaced Nick Scerbo, who retired last year, as Ridgewood’s Athletic Director this year. Kim Schmidt, a new health teacher at RHS, has taken over his position. She isn’t working alone, but taking on the job with the help of senior captains Caroline Kotch, Eric Bragg, Matt Elliot, and Erin Gioia. Many members of the team are excited about the enthusiasm the new coach offers to the team, although they will miss Coach Cook.
Ms. Schmidt will be leading practices in an entirely new location. Last year, the swim team had to travel by bus for forty-five minutes to Passaic County Technical Institute to use their pool. Luckily, the Ridgewood YMCA has offered Ridgewood Swim pool time this year. This is much more convenient for the swimmers. Not only is it closer, but RHS will not have to bus the entire team forty-five minutes away. RHS swimmers are happy to know that the new location means that practices will be held at more reasonable times, as opposed to the 4:30-9:00 practices last year.
Before the official start of the season, several captain’s practices were held to prep swimmers for the season ahead. Through making use of the weight room and going on runs, known as dryland workouts, the team built endurance that would benefit them in the pool. On Monday, November 9, the team kicked off the season with their first practice. Captain Caroline Kotch remarked, “It is definitely going to be a great season because we have a new coach who is really enthusiastic, and we have a whole new look on the way we swim, especially with the help of some really energetic captains. People seem dedicated to do well, and I see success in the future.” The boys team is training especially hard as their first meet against Don Bosco on December 4 quickly approaches.