PIPING UP: Community Park Bluefish swimmer Piper Dubow displays her butterfly form in a meet this summer. Dubow helped the Bluefish take first in Division 1 at the Princeton Area Swimming and Diving Association (PASDA) championship meet in late July. Dubow was named the 18-and-under girls MVP at the PASDA meet, taking first in both the 50-yard breaststroke and 100 individual medley. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)
By Bill Alden
It was a record-breaking summer on many levels for the Community Park Bluefish swimming team.
First, the venerable program, which celebrated its 50th anniversary last year, drew 280 swimmers and 60 divers for its 2022 campaign.
“That is the most we have ever had, it blew away the most we had before,” said Bluefish co-head coach Mike Uchrin. “This is our first year back to normal season, 2021 was a transition. We weren’t really sure what to expect this year. As the year went along, I was talking to Kelsey (co-head coach Kelsey Schwimmer), saying these are really big numbers. A lot of families in the post-COVID times wanted to get their kids back into the water and back into a sport where they will have fun. It worked out great.”
Featuring such depth, the Bluefish went 5-0 in dual meet competition in Princeton Area Swimming and Diving Association (PASDA) Division 1 action and then dominated the PASDA championship meet in late July, taking first in Division 1 with 4,441 points, well ahead of runner-up Hopewell Valley, which had 1,999.
“It is the most points we have ever had at the championships, we had the most PASDA MVPs (six) we have ever had,” said Uchrin, whose team has been undefeated since 2015 and hosted the PASDA championship meet. “We had multiple PASDA league records that we set. It wasn’t just our collective performance but we had a lot of great individual performances.”
While proud of the team’s achievements, Uchrin is more focused on making sure that the swimmers have a great time.
“It is not about the wins and losses, it is about the fun,” said Uchrin, noting that Friday practices are devoted to playing sharks and minnows and water polo rather than grinding out laps. more