Opening the summer swim and dive season at Lake Isle was the calm before the storm for Greenburgh coach Jackie Cordero.
It’s hard for any team to beat powerhouse Lake Isle, so Cordero had her swimmers go in with one goal in mind, to race against the clock. It allowed her to breathe easy and know her team would not feel any pressure.
“I said to them we’re here for a time trial type of meet, just to see a baseline of where we are,” Cordero said. “Today we have a lot of new kids out here for the first time and it’s good for them to be able to swim in those first heats. We also want them to have fun and just do their best racing against the clock.”
In addition, the team of 54, which includes only one diver, was missing many swimmers due to camps and vacations, so she was short-handed.
“We’re a little bit up from last year and we definitely have more depth in the 12-and-unders, which is the future of my team,” Cordero said. “Without them I wouldn’t have a team in two or three years. I’m just struggling the first two meets because my kids are away. Come mid-season I think we’re going to finish up stronger than what we look like at the beginning of the season.”
That’s a common theme for Greenburgh, which does exactly what it needs to do each year — win at least one meet — to stay in Division 1 of the Westchester County Swim Conference and then become a perennial top 5 team at the Westchester County Championships.
“That’s my same goal every year,” Cordero said. “I hope to stay this year [in Division 1] and I will finish strong at the end. That I can guarantee.”
On Monday, Lake Isle topped Greenburgh 236-173. Connor Kwon was Greenburgh’s lone double event winner, taking first in the 12-u backstroke and breaststroke.
The second meet will be against Wykagyl. Cordero said her team and Wykagyl are “a mirror image” and it depends which team is closer to full strength.
“The last two meets should be very interesting,” Cordero said of facing Scarsdale and Rye Golf Club. “That’s where we’ll have the bulk of our kids and we’ll see what kind of team I really have moving into the counties.”
The county seeding entries are due after Greenburgh’s second meet, so for those who haven’t been around she’ll use USS times.
“Of course you move it up and down a little, but overall I know where they’re at because I’ve had them for a while,” Cordero said.
When it matters most, Cordero expects the Li, Shopovick and Moy families to provide a lot of points, along with Nirvaan Nagaldinne and Kate Hoesterey. Newcomer families Coulthard and Iacobazzi have also added to the mix already.
“We’re definitely growing again,” Cordero said. “We have some new swimmers coming in. The future of Greenburgh is looking better. We also did afternoon practices this year and that’s where I was able to recruit some more of those kids because of the time.”