Girl’s Swim Team Starts of Strong With 3-0 Record


Annalisa Roarty (top left), Diya Rahul, Ananya Madhira, Ciara Dixon, Diys Kalava (bottom left) and Julianna Bongiovanni pose after a swim meet.

Katie Buelt, Features Editor

After last year’s accomplished season, the HHS girl’s swim team is preparing to add to their streak of successes. Rounding out last year with a record of 9-3-1, they won the NJSIAA Central Jersey Tournament, only to end their season the following week due to a loss in the group tournament semifinals. The team seemed to bounce back significantly from this somewhat disappointing end, crushing Phillipsburg in their first meet with a score of 124-46 on December 3. Notable performances include junior Danielle D’Ambrosio, and seniors Skylar Ward and Marissa Choe, who took first place in the 200 freestyle, 100 butterfly and 100 freestyle, respectively. Freshman Meghan Sharma opened her first high school meet with shocking success, winning the 200 individual medley.

Clearly, the team is no stranger to breaking barriers. In the past nineteen years, they have racked up a record of 155-69-1, not once ending a season with more losses than wins. Two current seniors, Skylar Ward and Katie Battagliese, have already committed to Division I schools. They have also won countless awards over the years, including four consecutive Central Jersey State Championships from 2016 to 2019.

For head coach Todd Sudol, he expects nothing less from his athletes than repetition of past success. As a former swimmer himself for TCNJ, he won thirteen All American titles and holds four school records. In his coaching career, his teams have been ranked top ten in the state every year since 2008. Despite this, his focus isn’t whole on the records and awards. “Our goal is to not only win meets and titles,” Sudol asserted, “but to teach student-athletes commitment to themselves and the team, and develop a sense of pride, character, and integrity.” When it comes to physically keeping his team in shape, Sudol says he believes in “quality first, then quantity”; in other words, he uses a variety of exercises, both in and out of the water, in order to build up their strength gradually and avoid injury.

The team’s streak of three consecutive wins puts them in second place in the Skyland conference rankings. Their success puts them right behind Bridgewater-Raritan, who they will compete against on December 17. Hillsborough has defeated BRHS in meets for five consecutive years, yet going up against the number one team will still pose an inherent challenge. Despite this, the team still has high hopes for their future. “I expect us to do as well as last year if not better,” said sophomore Ananya Madhira. “But no matter what, we will have a fun time together.”