SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ -- While the sport conjures images of sunshine and beaches, swimming is a winter sport for high school athletes. Scotch Plains-Fanwood's boys and girls teams are perennial powers in the pool. They'll hit the pool deck on Tuesday, Dec. 3, at home vs Governor Livingston.

The boys are coming off a successful season in which they made the State final for the third time in four years but lost to powerhouse Mainland, which won its fourth straight NJSIAA Public B championship by defeating Scotch Plains-Fanwood, 98-72, at The College of New Jersey. However, several top boy swimmers graduated, including Alan Shao, Daniel Donaldson, and Josh Cohen, who now competes for Georgia Tech. 

The girls are the defending Union County champions. They came from 10 points behind midway through the County championship meet held at Rutgers to overtake Westfield and win their fifth consecutive Union County title. In the process, the Raiders avenged the only blemish on their 11-1 season. They eventually advanced to the Sectional final, but lost to a deep Chatham team. Most of last year's team returns this season, with the notable exception of Caroline Warren, who now swims for MIT.

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Key Losses: Josh Cohen (Georgia Tech) and Alan Shao
Key Returning Swimmers: Corey He, Aidan Trenery, Jason Mongiovi, Sean Merkle, Lucas Route, Ethan Morrobel, Matt London, Owen Ferrone, and Mike DePaola.

Coach Jess Hulnik, who has coached swimming at SPFHS for 25 years, will spend the early part of the season figuring out who will swim each event in order to maximize the team's potential.

"We are looking for kids to step up and play some roles that they did not have to play last year," said Coach Hulnik. "Despite graduation, we still have quite a bit of versatility. We hope to keep teams off balance using that."

Having enough depth will be important to the team's success.

"We are going to need freshmen and some kids who are competing in new events to be able to get in there and score points for us," Coach Hulnik said.


Key Losses: Caroline Warren (MIT)
Key Returning Swimmers: Abby Ryan, Rachel Small, Sofia Leonetti, Nicole Kenny, Julia Bonhote, Lily Hughes, Chloe Howell, Aislinn Mooney

Coach Hulnik is confident that her team can follow up on last year's success.

"We have some great leadership in our senior and junior class. Our sophomore class now has a year under their belt and knows what to expect," Coach Hulnik said. "We are pretty solid across the board up top and are looking for swimmers to step up in our outside lanes in all events."


First Last Gr. Stroke   First Last Gr. Stroke
Ethan Morrobel 12 Butterfly Free IM   Julianna Blanco 12 Free and Back
Lucas Route 12 Sprint Free and Back   Nicole Kenny 12 Free and Back
Michael DePaola 11 Sprint Free and Back   Lily Holston 11 Distance Free and Breast
Owen Ferrone 11 Butterfly, IM, Distance   Sofia Leonetti 11 Breast and IM
Matt London 11 Sprint Free   Emma Route 11 Free and Breast
Sean Merkle 11 Back and IM   Abby Ryan 11 Free, Breast, Back
Jason Mongiovi 11 Fly, IM, Free   Rachel Small 11 Free and Back
David Riedell 11 Free   Julia Bonhote 10 Sprint Free
Luka Culjak 10 Free   Stephanie Brown 10 Breast
Corey He 10 Distance Free   Camille Cooke 10 Butterfly and Free
Gavin Morrobel 10 Back and Free   Sofia Corsaro 10 Back and Butterfly
Conor Reilly 10 Free   Sophia Gallahue 10 Free
Aidan Trenery 10 IM, Back   Katelyn Gaulin 10 Breast and IM
Bradley Frank 9 Free   Chloe Howell 10 Free and Breast
Owen Higinbotham 9 Free and Butterfly   Lily Hughes 10 Back, Free, IM
Michael Levin 9 Free   Maddy Joe 10 Free
Peter Reilly 9 Free   Kaitlyn Lusk 10 Free and Butterfly
Jackson Riedell 9 Free   Aislinn Mooney 10 Distance Free and IM
Nick Schmidt 9 Free   Jessica Rojek 10 Free
Jay Slack 9 Free and Butterfly   Morgan Tsin 10 Back
Sean Stuart 9 Free   Julianna Warren 10 Free
Thomas Yick 9 Free and Breast   Julia Yick 10 Free
          Chloe Burfeindt 9 Breast
          Helena Chan 9 Free
          Avery Higinbotham 9 Free and Butterfly
          Sophie Meinke 9 Free
          Ava Mustacciuolo 9 Back and Butterfly is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily local news source. Sign up for our free daily eNewsletter and “Like” us on Facebook and twitter @SPF_TAP. Download the free TAPinto App for iPhone or Android.