By Sue Carlson
History was made at the Washingtonville High School Natatorium this week when the Varsity Boys Swimming and Diving team went undefeated (5-0) in conference match-ups, out swimming and diving conference rivals. The boys dove into their 6-week shortened season January 19th, training six days a week under the direction of Head Coach, Jim Frisbie, and Assistant Coaches, Dan Wargo and Dawn Sroczynski, with one team goal in mind: a banner.“This season may not look like every other season, but I can guarantee you that none of us will ever forget it,” stated Coach Frisbie, who arranged with the school to have the virtual meets streamed live for parents who are not permitted by Section IX to sit in the stands.Traditional “Senior Night” program was also held virtually with eight seniors being recognized for their dedication to the varsity program. Seniors were given shirts, and other swim related gifts from their families.” Frisbie added, “This season doesn’t look the way we expected it to look, but we are trying to treat it the same way we would under normal circumstances.” Led by senior captains, Brayden Dwyer, Ryan Lerner, and Mason Rowlands, the boys knew in a virtual competition, it would be vital to motivate each other. “Motivation had to come from within this season more than ever,” shared Lerner, “I am proud of our team. We banned together and lifted each other up in a fanless, crowdless, noiseless pool. We pushed each other, we swam hard, and we waited…to see how our times paired up against our opponents.Hearing we might be losing out on our season and then having states canceled was devastating,” added Dwyer, “It was something we had worked so hard for a long time. After losing County last year by less than two points, there was nothing we wanted more than to come back this year and finally put a banner on our wall.
“When I found out that the season was being postponed and states canceled, I kept training everyday so I could help out my team as much as I could to do something special with the season that we do have,” commented Rowlands.
When asked what the shortened season meant to him, Coach Wargo reflected, “History making. What these boys have and can accomplish this year is six years in the making, since our seniors joined the team as 7th graders. They can leave WHS knowing that they have accomplished something no other boys’ swim/dive program has done.” Coach Frisbie added, “I want to thank the boys for being so committed to the team. There are a lot of rules that need to be followed each day and this group of guys have done so with class. They have made their parents and our school and community proud. I am grateful that we were able to share this season together!”
The Boys Varsity Swimming and Diving team will take their final positions on the block and board on Saturday, February 27th, as Section IX holds a virtual championship. Wizard boys will band together one last time and take a second shot at making school history.
(Photos provided by Briana Marin)
Caption 1: Handshakes and high-fives are set aside in Covid-19 times. Seniors Ryan Lerner and Mason Rowlands “elbow bump” – a new sign of sportsmanship across Section IX.
Caption 2: Team Picture: (First Row) Raymond Roa; Luck Sanchez; Ryan Lerner; Tony Mantali; Christopher Czenszak; Aaron Gonzales; Brayden Dwyer; Jason Gannon; Mason Rowlands; Owen Dwyer; (Second Row L-R): Coach Dawn; Coach Wargo; Majed Watad; Jeromy Finnigan; Adrian Rivera; Brian Hitnariansingh; Cooper Wright; Ryan Godfrey; Sebastian Powzaniuk; Tyler Briceno; Jackson Vinarub; Adam Kellman; Jack Donlon; Coach Frisbie; Not Pictured: Aaron Hamilton and Thomas Bertocchi.