With talent and experience, the Hillsborough High School girls swimming squad is looking to build off a highly successful 2012-13 campaign and capture greatness yet again.
“The girls won the county championship last year, and after winning they’d like to carry that into this year and defend that title,” head coach Todd Sudol said. “They also won a state sectional title so one of the team goals is to make it back there and defend their title.”
While the goals are set high, Sudol knows that none of this success would be possible without the leadership abilities of his seniors.
“I think one of the big things that has helped us year-in and year-out is strong leadership from seniors,” said Sudol, “They’re very close and it’s always about the team. They get excited about the meets and they want to see each other do well, so they’re swimming for each other.”
Lindsay Temple and Emma Kohlenstein are two of the seniors who have mentored the younger swimmers.
One of the youngest swimmers on the team, Megan Bull, and the rest of the freshmen class received praise from Sudol for their work ethic.
“The freshmen just want to come in and do their best for the team,” Sudol said.
Temple, on the other hand, returns to Hillsborough after recording the third-fastest in the state in the 100 backstroke at 56.10. The Princeton University commit, along with teammate Julieyanna Parker, was also part of three first-place relay finishes at last year’s Meet of Champions, just the second time that has ever been done.
Right now the Raiders sit at 4-0 with the championship meets ahead. The Skyland Conference meet takes place Jan. 18.
“I think we’re carrying a lot of momentum because last season was one of the best we’ve had in awhile,” Temple said. “We’ve also got a lot of talent coming in with our freshmen class, because we lost talent last year and a lot of the girls have stepped up.”
The goals are set, and the Raiders are confident in their abilities to meet expectations, but they certainly do not want to get ahead of themselves. While a championship is the main goal, the Raiders are looking to take this season in stride, one meet at a time.
“I think we’re just going to run off the energy of each other,” said Temple, “We have positive people on the team … and we keep each other motivated and make sure we don’t forget what the ultimate goal is, and to keep working hard to make sure we get there.”