Fall Sports Preview: Swimming and Cross Country

By Mia Potamianos and Jenna Vespi

Staff Writers

Jamesville-DeWitt High School's Varsity Girls Swimming and Diving team of 2014 is having an undefeated season so far with the help and leadership of the three senior captains, Hannah Gibson, Hayley Schultz and Cortney Vaughan. The team’s sucess might also be due to the fact that they are “close knit, like a little family,” said junior Hannah Gunther.

The team’s toughest competitors are New Hartford and Oswego, but they were no match for the team. On Sept. 17 the girls beat Oswego 100 to 84 and a week later, on Sept. 30, they also beat New Hartford.

Freshman Caelen Constantino refers to the team as a family. "We've got each other's backs when there's something needed to be done," said Constantino. Getting the whole team to qualify for sectionals is what they want done. With several people already qualified, they are making progress towards that goal. “At a meet you just have to qualify for the sectional time to go to the sectional meet,” said Schultz.

The fact that many people have already qualified may be due to their buddy system. An upperclassman girl is given a lowerclassman “swim sister.” Freshman Riley Cappelletti said these “sisters” exchange bags full of food before away meets. They also make each other posters with encouraging phrases on them that get hung around the pool before home meets at J-DMS.

But it’s not just on meet days that the team bonds. The team has pasta parties after practices the day before meets. The girls take turns bringing pasta, salad, and bread and eat together in the cafeteria at J-D Middle School.

This year the girls are hoping to have an outstanding finish to their season with a win at sectionals.

Girls and Boys Cross Country:

Jamesville-DeWitt Varsity Boys and Girls Cross Country teams work hard and get a lot done with an “upbeat vibe” at practice, says senior Brady Wing who is captain along with senior Matt Murad. “It is really fun leading this outstanding group of girls through races,” said said senior Sammy Jaffe who is captain with senior Rachel Fairbanks. Both the boys and girls have won all six of their meets so far.

Every week, the teams alternate practice between J-DHS and Green Lakes. Practices are led by Boy’s Head Coach Emily Rowles and Girl’s Head Coach Jim Lawton, and consist of the teams running anywhere from 5 to 8 miles a day. At meets and invitationals, runners complete a 3-mile course and try to beat personal times. Both the Girls and Boys Cross Country teams plan on completing an undefeated season and traveling to Manhattan, NY to compete in an invitational over Columbus Day weekend.

The teams have a pasta party before every meet. This helps them to get closer and carbo-load, which helps the runners gain energy for the meet the following day. Junior Matt Salbert said he enjoys spending time with his teammates more then any other aspect of the team. Sophomore Nick Palin agrees with this, but says that getting in shape is also great.

The “upbeat vibe” of the Cross Country teams is what they hope will lead them to victory throughout the season and eventually to states.