Short-handed swim team strives for success

Michael D’Elia gets up on the block, preparing for his race.


            Although the OBHS boys swim team struggled this year, the team pulled through with individual and moral victories. The boys won meets against Piscataway, North Brunswick, and Sayreville, giving them a 3-4 record. However, the boys stayed focused on their positive progress and growth by continuing to work individually and as a team.

            Being on the swim team brings the students closer together, whether it’s competing against other teams or going to restaurants after meets. Junior Shereef Ellithy said his favorite aspect of the team is “being able to see friends after school.”

            The close-knit team featured successful athletes who constantly work to improve. “The biggest strength we have is that all of us swim on a club team, meaning that all of us have experience swimming before,” sophomore Thomas Fulton said. He trains extensively outside of school and has been swimming for eight years.

            Fulton attributes his personal success with the team to his devotion to swimming throughout his life. “I swim for GMONY, Greater Monmouth County Swim Team. Since GMONY practices run throughout the year, I practice most days a week,” he said.

            “I was on a club team in my previous off season,” Ellithy commented about how he also takes the time to improve outside of school. He also said that the Old Bridge “coaches are awesome” in helping the team get better with each meet and practice.

            The friendships and relationships built throughout the season make the tough times easier to manage. “I like having a team and having a group of friends that does the same thing I do,” sophomore Jacob Pitrowski said. Pitrowski has been swimming since age 10, and he hopes that the team will be “way better next year and increase the amount of boys on the team.”

Shereef Ellithy comes up for air as he swims the breaststroke.

            Many of the boys agree that they need more swimmers to improve their overall performance as a team. “Our biggest weakness is that we have only around 9 teammates, meaning that most of us have to swim 4 events whilst swimmers on other teams have to only swim 1-2 events due to their size,” Ellithy said.

            Despite the obstacles they face, the swimmers keep their spirits up. Ellithy commented, “Our strength has to be our strong mindset going into every meet with odds against us as every team is larger, but we still try our best.”

Posted on 3/9/22

Photos by Lors Photography

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