The YMCA of Montclair Dolphins have been back in action over the past two weekends as the short-course swim season gets underway, with the youngest swimmers in a thrilling first swim meet of the season at the Pumpkin Chill 10 and Under Invite on October 8, hosted by perennial national Y champion Lakeland Hills Family YMCA. The Dolphins had 47 swimmers competing, many of them in competitive action for the Dolphins at a YMCA swim meet for the first time.
The team was led by returning and accomplished Dolphins such as Toby and Marcel Arbelaez, Maeve D’Amico, Lilliana Ferrante, Simon Firth, Chloe Fritzky, Sophia Landrove, Clare Laracy, Daphne Razo, and Aiden Stopp, who were all top 6 finishers in individual events. The competition culminated with some close and exciting relay races!
The meet came just over a week after 140 swimmers raced in time trials at the YMCA Montclair on September 30. The Dolphins start the season with a squad of 190 swimmers, including around 65 new members. The team will race against other North Jersey YMCA teams in dual meets starting this weekend and in more invitational events like the Pumpkin Chill throughout the season. The girls squad takes on the West Essex YMCA on Saturday, October 14, while the boys squad races against Greater Morristown YMCA.
“It’s great to see so many new swimmers, especially the young swimmers,” Head Coach Kyle Laracy said. “They all did great. We are gearing up for more invitational and dual meets beginning this weekend.”
Kyle, who has been coaching with the Dolphins for four years, will lead the team through his first full short-course competition as head coach since taking on the job in June. Kyle already had a successful summer season with 12 swimmers at the Gold Championships compared to 4 last year and 41 in the Bronze/Silver Championships, up from 25 a year ago.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to work with a great, diverse team of coaching staff, with the parent group and within the community,” Kyle said. “Competitive swimming offers an unparalleled opportunity for each child to develop and has tremendous physical benefits. I want them to meet their personal goals in swimming and, by doing so, develop character traits that will serve them for the rest of their lives as a lifetime of competitive swimming has done for me.”
Submitted by Dolphin Parent Volunteer Simon Webb
Pictured in photo: Coach Maddie and Director of Competitive Aquatics Kyle Laracy