Montclair Dolphins Showed Off Their Undeniable Talents

Montclair YMCA Dolphins competed in the 2016 Ocean County YMCA Great Turkey Invitational swim meet, achieving personal bests in multiple events.

The Montclair Dolphins of YMCA make the town more than just proud!

montclair dolphins
Connor Townson finished in the top 3 in each of his 9 events, including 4 first place finishes. Photo courtesy of Jess Michaud.

On Mon. Nov. 7, the Montclair YMCA Dolphins competed in the 2016 Ocean County YMCA Great Turkey Invitational swim meet. The 130 YMCA of Montclair Dolphins ages 9 – 17 were extremely eager to take on the meet that spanned over three days, Nov. 4-6 and drew nearly 700 swimmers from 5 YMCAs in the region. Overall, the Montclair Dolphins achieved personal bests in multiple events and 47 Dolphins ages 9-17 had turned in 160 top 10 finishes in individual events.

The 27 Dolphins had 81 top five finishes among them: Avery Best (13), Gaea Caro (13), Natalie Dripchak (11), Danielle Feldberg (13), Carly Frank (10), Elizabeth Habjian (11), Kai Michaud (17), Natasha Nowaczek (10), Mia Padberg (14) and Thatcher Smith (15) of Montclair; Edward Madrigal (16) and Dom Ancey (12) of Belleville; Aly Breikaa (10), Justin Cueva (10), Nathan Espiritu (14), Ryan LoCicero (10) and Mizell McEachin (13) of Bloomfield; Izzy Deubner (13), Liam Hood (14),  Leo Powers (12), Mille Steffe (14), Connor Townson (12) and Enzo Wood (12) of Glen Ridge; Jordan Sol (12) of Kearny; Cristian Remache of Nutley; and Kazuri Lateef (10) and Howard Zhuang (10) of West Orange.  Six Montclair Y swimmers posted a total of 17 first place finishes this year: Townson with 4, Best, Breikaa, Wood and Zhuang with 3 each and LoCicero with one.

The Montclair relay teams placed in the top 3 in five events, including the 9-10 Boys 200 medley and 200 free team of Breikaa, Cueva, LoCicero and Zhuang; the 9-10 Girls 200 free team of Frank, Nowaczek, Lateef and Sophia Juliano (10); the 11-12 Boys 200 free team of Remache, Ancey, Wood and Townson; and the 11-12 Boys 200 medley team of Ancey, Townson, Powers and Joe Rodriguez-LaLlave (12).

Head Coach Paulo Madeira said “The Great Turkey gives swimmers of all levels a chance to compete in a big regional meet early in the season. We are very proud of the great swimming and determination we saw from our swimmers at this meet.”

The YMCA of Montclair Dolphins swim team offers a year-round opportunity for competitive swimming in both YMCA and USA Swimming competitions as well as seasonal instructional clinics for aspiring competitive athletes. The team is comprised of girls and boys from age 6 through high school. More than 200 athletes train with the team each year. They compete at all levels, based on their skill set.

Interested in showing your Montclair pride? Check out their Team Calendar and Team Events. For more information about the Montclair YMCA Dolphins swim team, contact Head Coach Paulo Madeira at or 973-744-3400 or Parent Volunteer Sonja Hood at

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