One girls’ swimming team is looking to reload, the other looking to continue its resurgence and the feeling that both Eastern High School coach Theresa DeCoursey and Clearview coach Steve Skinner have in common is a strong belief that their teams will develop and get stronger as the season progresses.
After eight consecutive losing seasons, the Vikings turned things around last season, going 5-5 and qualifying for a spot in the Public South Division A tournament.
With Kayal Gagnon, Alex Bromley, Kednall Bromley, Nicole Meskin, Christina Janesky, Caroline Ricciardi and Carly Harowitz, returning, DeCoursey is optimistic about the upcoming season.
“We lost some top swimmers like Debbie Meskin and Julia Costa, but we gained a talented freshman in Julia Spanfeiner. I know the team we have is talented.”
While the Vikings may lack in quality middle lane swimmers, they make it up with strong outside lane swimmers.
“While first-places might not always happen for us, we have enough depth and certainly have the girls who can make up the score with seconds, thirds and fourths,” DeCoursey said.
“I’m excited about the season. The girls have been working hard and looking forward to the season beginning. Our practices don’t start until 6:30 p.m. so it takes a lot of dedication (to be on the team) but they’re certainly sticking with it.”
Last season the Pioneers captured the Tri-County Conference Royal Division, placed second at Coaches Invitational A meet and dominated at the Gloucester County Championship and Tri-County Showcase meets.
With All-South Jersey first-team selection Marissa Moskalow returning Clearview is looking to duplicate and surpass last season’s accomplishments.
“We have to do some shifting around a bit this year to try to fill our loss from graduation.” Skinner said. “Our numbers are strong — we have some newcomers like Rachel Doring, Kira Schwerzler and Julia Rothstein — and it’s a matter of sorting out all the swimmers and set our training to solidify those gaps.
Along with Moskalow, Skinner will be counting on Miranda Coughlan, Cristina Vick, Gabby Moskalow, Emily Bayes and Emily Kopchick and Lindsey Doring to lead his squad and provide leadership and experience.
“It’s a long season and I’m looking forward to watching this team grow as we approach February and the state tournament,” Skinner said.