Winter Sports Preview, p.2

Winter Sports Preview, pt. 2

Oyster River High School winter sports are working hard to give their students an opportunity to play while keeping athletics safe for everyone. In Winter Sports Preview, p.1, many of the winter sports teams were introduced including the boys basketball team and ski team who competed last night. This article will be covering the rest of Oyster River High School winter sports.

Swimming & Diving

Last winter, the boys swimming & diving team won the DII state championship. Up until last Friday, January 8th, there were only practices scheduled for the swim team. Fortunately, they will have a chance to compete this year. The team thinks they’re in good shape to do well this season. Boys swimmer Emerson Moore (‘21) said, “We have been practicing every Saturday in two different blocks for 45 minutes to spread out swimmers. A lot of the swimmers have also been practicing with club teams as well.” Moore and William Carrico (‘23) are two boys to look out for because they are top point scorers on the team. The girls placed 3rd in states last year.  Two girls who could play a big role in the Bobcats’ success are Elli Donovan (‘22) and Addie Burgland (‘22). The Oyster River swimming and diving team has their first meet this Friday, January 15th, at Londonderry. 

Indoor Track

“While the track team does not have any official competitions this season, we haven’t really taken it very easy,” said coach of the indoor track team, Nicholas Ricciardi. After an amazing season, including the boys qualifying for nationals in the 4 x 800 last year, the team can only train for the spring track season. Last winter, the boys won states and several runners placed very highly individually. Owen Fleischer (‘21) and Myles Carrico (‘20) placed 1st and 2nd in the 1,000 meter, and Andy O’Brien (‘21) won the 1,500 meter and 3,000 meter races. Carrico has since graduated and went on to run at Coastal Carolina University, while O’Brien has begun to work with a private trainer in preparation for running at Cornell University. Fleischer plans on taking his hard work and skill to the spring season, which will be the focus for everyone participating in Indoor Track this year. Ricciardi said, “we are using this opportunity to get in the best possible shape for our outdoor season… We are hoping that we are going to be doing the things we need to while other squads take more of an off-season approach to this winter.” The girls placed third in states last year and lost some key runners. However, Charlotte Cousins (‘22) and Jen Nadig (‘21) have a great shot to carry the girls to a successful spring season. Many of the girls will be lifting weights throughout the winter to get themselves in top shape. With COVID-19 restrictions, even this will look different. “The biggest change for us, other than no competitions, was the overall size of the squad, as well as our inability to access the weight room space. As many know, lots of our practice time is devoted to weight room sessions,” said coach Ricciardi. Luckily, he plans to work around the challenges by trying new things. “We have had to get creative with certain lifts… we have implemented tons of variations and shifted focus towards more dead lifts and other compound lifts.” It will be exciting to see what Oyster River runners can get out of this “offseason” in preparation for spring track 

Coed Unified Basketball

The Bobcats performed greatly last year and they look to continue their success this season. The head coach for the unified basketball team, Alexander Satterfield, is happy to have the same amount of games as a regular season. “We were lucky to get 6 games, which is what a normal season would be, so I am also fortunate that we have the same number of games.” Coach Satterfield is also pleased to meet the new players. “There have been very strong numbers for registration and I am definitely excited to meet everyone,” said Satterfield. Every player is a big part of the team and they always have shown a great attitude on the court. Their teamwork is seen in every game they play and they’re always fun to watch. The Bobcats will be facing off Winnacunnet High School on January 25th @ 4:00 p.m. to kick off their season. 

Wrestling Team

Since losing the Oyster River High School star wrestler, Noah Strout (‘20), the Bobcats are still looking for their next star. Unfortunately, this likely won’t be the year they find their next stand-out wrestler. Due to COVID-19, Exeter High School, the school Oyster River typically wrestles with, isn’t allowing any outside wrestlers at their gym. Coach of the Oyster River Wrestling team, Kimberly Strout explained that the other reason is because the Bobcats wrestlers are independent wrestlers. “The other reason why we were not able to wrestle is because the wrestling committee decided that only teams can wrestle during COVID thus not allowing independents a spot. All of our wrestlers are considered independents. Being an independent wrestler is hard enough, but during COVID it is even harder. Someday, independent wrestlers will be accepted better in the wrestling world but for right now they are shunned.” Coach Strout also explained that the wrestling world is used to dealing with diseases. “We already had our athletes putting body protectants on before all practices and meets… We always have a sanitizing bucket with wipes, and we wash the mats pre and post with a germicidal solution.” For now, the independent wrestlers are forced to train on their own time.