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Swimmers Excel at Holiday Classic and Holiday Splash Meets

It was a busy weekend for our team, with some of our swimmers competing at the 33rd Annual Holiday Classic at Rutgers and others attending the Holiday Splash at Berkeley Aquatics.  It was an amazing one with some incredible swims yielding 30 new Team Records, 115 Person Best Times, top places, Gold, Sectional, and Futures times, and much more!

In what has become the premier mid-season meet for the region’s finest swimmers, athletes from across New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New York (and even one from Texas) went head-to-head at Rutgers University for the Holiday Classic XXXII. There were hundreds of swimmers from 43 different teams competing. Just qualifying for this meet (and getting in) is notable and our 10 qualifying swimmers represented us well.

With some events having 100+ swimmers and some fast competition, NJB grabbed a few top-16 scoring places, with swims from Reese Berg ( 13th in the 100 Breast, 13th in the 100 IM, 9th in the 50 Back, 8th in the 50 Breast, 14th in the 50 Free); Matt Freund ( 14th in the 200 Fly); Nathaniel Kern (13th in the 50 Fly); and Jake Riva (4th in the 100 Back, 4th in the 100 Fly, 3rd in the 100 Free, 7th in the 200 Free, 5th in the 200 IM, and 3rd in the 50 Free). Considering many teams attended with dozens of swimmers, its impressive that these swims earned us our 25th Place out of 43 teams and more than doubling our points earned at last year’s meet.

Congratulations to Matt Freund (100 Fly) and Jake Riva (100 Back, 100 Fly, 100 Free, 200 Back, 200 Free, 200 IM, 50 Free) who swam Speedo Sectional* cuts. Jake also swam 7 USA Swimming Future Championships* cuts.

*For information regarding USA Swimming championship meets, go   here .

Things were just as exciting in New Providence as 40 of our swimmers hit the water at Berkeley Aquatics’ Holiday Splash. There were swimmers from 10 teams in attendance, but NJB shone bright with 30 Top-3 Finishes by Paityn Bates (3rd in the 100 Free, 2nd in the 50 Breast, 2nd in the 500 Free); Kayla Bhagaloo (3rd in the 200 Fly); Brandon Castellaneta (3rd in the 100 Breast); Marcus Innamorato (3rd in the 1000 Free, 2nd in the 50 Back); Ryan Juckett (3rd in the 50 Fly, 50 Free, and 500 Free); Jonathan Kern (3rd in the 100 IM, 2nd in the 50 Breast, 2nd in the 50 Fly, 3rd in the 50 Free); Josh Langley (2nd in the 100 Fly); Billy Ruddy (3rd in the 200 Back); Sean Sharma (2nd in the 500 Free); Evan Weinberger (2nd in the 400 IM and 500 Free); Jillian Weinberger (2nd in the 1000 Free); Hannah Wilson (2nd in the 200 Back and 50 Free); and Leah Wilson (3rd in the 200 IM).  And a special shout-out to our First Place finishers Paityn Bates (200 Free); Hannah Calderon (1650 Free); Marcus Innamorato (50 Free); Jonathan Kern (50 Back); Sydney Mills (200 Fly); and Hannah Wilson (1000 Free, 200 IM)!

NJ Swimming Gold Times (JOs/Senior Champs) were earned by Marcus Innamorato (50 Back) and Hannah Wilson (1000 Free, 200 Back)!

All of this fantastic swimming from both meets yielded about 115 Personal Best Times. Many of these were significant like Matt Freund’s 200 Free (-14.81) and 400 IM (-13.85); Billy Ruddy’s 1000 Free (-13.71); Paityn Bates’ 500 Free (-51.79); Salome Calderon’s 200 Free (-36.16); Marcus Innamorato’s 1000 Free (-1:06.16); Ryan Juckett’s 100 Fly (-24.40) and 500 Free (-23.13); Chris Kiederling’s 100 Back (-31.65) and 200 Free (-16.59); Sean Sharma’s 500 Free (-27.07); Emma Waldron’s 500 Free (-14.17); Hannah Wilson’s 1000 Free (-23.81) and 200 IM (-17.72); and so many more.

Our NJB Record Board will never be the same with new marks set by Reese Berg (50 Back, 50 Breast); Nathaniel Kern (100 Free, 50 & 100 Back, 50 Fly); Clare Schwartz (50 & 100 Free, 100 Back, 200 Fly, 400 IM); Jake Riva (50 & 100 Free, 100 & 200 Back, 100 Fly, 200 IM); Billy Ruddy (1000 Free); Matt Freund (200 Fly, 400 IM); Zach Bezold (200 Breast); Hannah Wilson (1000 Free, 200 Back, 200 IM); Marcus Innamorato (50, 100, & 1000 Free, 50 Back); Evan Weinberger (500 Free, 400 IM); and Ty Hollar (100 Breast).

Congratulations to our swimmers and coaches on an incredible weekend! Next up, the Winter Festival in Montgomery, NY