Featuring a Blend of Quality and Quantity, Nassau Swim Club Thrived at PASDA Meet
For the Nassau Swim Club, a blend of quantity and quality helped it enjoy a big performance at the Princeton Area Swimming and Diving Association (PASDA) championship meet.
“We did really well,” said Nassau head coach Morgan Sawin, whose team took second out of five teams in the Division 2 standings at the PASDA meet.
“We had a big number of kids come out. We had a lot of young kids, which always helps. We had around 50 kids there, which is two-thirds of the whole team. It can be tough to get that number of kids to come out.”
Some of the top kids for the Lemmings came from the girls’ 10-and-under division as Sophia Burton won the 25 backstroke and took second in the 100 individual medley in that age group while Kimi Wei won the 100 IM and placed third in the 25 butterfly. Emma Hopkins was second in the 25 free, Nina Urcioli finished fourth in both the 25 freestyle and 25 fly, and Helen Amon was fourth in the 25 breast.
“I think they won all the relays,” said Sawin, referring to Burton, Wei, Hopkins, and Urcioli. “We call that main group the fantastic four. They just clean up. They swim year round. They can swim anything and do well.”
The team’s youngest girl swimmers also did well as Juliet Wei placed first in the girls’ 6-and-under division in the 25-meter free and 25 back while Lexi Hoffman placed second in the 25 free and third in the 25 back.
“What a difference a year makes,” added Sawin. “Last year they were little, nervous five-year-olds. They got taller and they have a lot more confidence.”
Margaret Hill made a big difference for the Lemmings in the girls’ 12-and-under division, placing first in the 50 free, 50 fly, and 100 IM.
“Her goal this year was to win everything she swims, she goes out with a lot of determination,” said Sawin, referring to Hill.
“She is very mature and will help when you need it. She will organize the younger kids even through she is only three years older than some of them. She swims year-round, she is one of our hardest workers.”
Sinjin Scozzaro gave the Lemmings some good work in the boys’ 6-and-under division, taking second in both the 25 free and 25 back.
“Sinjin is great, he comes from a swimming family,” noted Sawin. “I think his father grew up at the pool; he is following in his footsteps. He practices with the 9-10 year olds a lot. He swims laps for hours. You pick a stroke and he can swim anything.”
As for the 10-and-under boys’ group, Daniel Baytin led the way, taking first in both the 25 breast and the 100 IM. Simon Sheppard was a standout in the 12-and-under division, taking second in the 50 back and fifth in the 50 free.
“Daniel has grown; he is super tall,” said Sawin. “He has the perfect swimmer’s body; he was made to be a swimmer. He has a great stroke and great technique and with his size, he just cuts through the water. Simon is an anchor on the relays and he gave us some good swims.”
A pair of sisters, Rachel Adlai-Gail and Becca Adlai-Gail, came up big for the club’s teenage girls. Rachel won the girls’ 14-and-under 100 IM and was the runner up in the 50 fly while older sister, Becca, took first in the 100 IM, second in 50 fly, and fourth in the 50 free.
“They are great, they help as coaches,” added Sawin, referring to the Adlai-Gails.
“Swimming is their thing, they swim all year round, they are swimmers through and through.”
Another top swimmer for the Lemmings was Isabelle Monaghan, who won the girls’ 14-and-under the 50 back. “Isabelle is tall and she is made to swim; she comes in and cleans up in races,” said Sawin.
“I had her swim up at 17 in some dual meets and she did well. She also plays water polo. She went to Junior Olympics for water polo the next day after PASDA. I am sure she is good at water polo, but if she just did swimming, she could do really well.”
In the boys’ 18-and-under division, Princeton High standout Will Kinney did really well, winning the 50 free and finishing second in both the 50 back and 50 breast.
“Will also coaches so he was really busy this summer,” said Sawin. “To swim those times after he spent most of the meet on the deck coaching for four hours was great. He can stand on the deck and then jump in the pool and win all the races. He spent more time this summer on coaching. He is one of those go-to people, as long as they are there I know we are going to be OK. It is not often that you find someone like that who is a good coach and a good swimmer. He is really good with the kids.”
For Sawin, it was another very good summer overall with the Lemmings program.
“It is fun at the meets when we all come together,” said Sawin, who was in her third summer coaching at Nassau.
“The kids are chanting on the relays, there is constant cheering. The nine-year-olds set that up, it is ‘We are the Lemmings.’ It is a tradition at Nassau, I don’t have to coach that.”