September 30, 2014

Pinconning school district thanks SSCS on behalf of swim team

Discusses starting a girls swim team

By James Kuch
News Editor | news@arenacindependent.com
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STANDISH — Administrators from the Pinconning Area School District visited the Standish-Sterling Community Schools District school board meeting on Monday, April 11, to say thank you for allowing Pinconning’s first-year varsity boys swim team to practice with the SSC team, during the winter season.

Pinconning Superintendent Darren Kroczaleski, Athletic Director Jennifer Thunberg and board members Vice President Gary Yaros and Treasurer Mike Bauer opened the meeting by giving the SSCS board a letter of thanks.

“I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Standish-Sterling Community Schools District for allowing Pinconning High School to field its first ever varsity boys swim team,” Thunberg said.

The Spartans practiced all season at the Standish-Sterling Central High School pool.

Thunberg said she was surprised by the willingness of SSCS staff to help get the team started.

“When I approached Athletic Director Ben Welmers about this proposal, he was very helpful and accommodating,” she said. “I was even more impressed that coach (Noriene Izzo) welcomed our boys with open arms, and even gave up her time to represent them during our winter assembly.”

Thunberg said that the boys who participated were glad they did. She said the PASD would like to see the team compete again next year.

“While Standish-Sterling Central and Pinconning are rivals in athletics, this was a prime example of how a rivalry does not have to be unfriendly and uncooperative,” she said.

The SSCS board asked Thunberg if there was any interest in starting a girls team next fall.

“We have not had any girls show interest, yet,” she said. “I can tell you that our boys were very adamant that they wanted to have the opportunity to swim,” she said. “I have not had any girls show interest, but I have not thrown the idea of starting a team back out to them.”

Thunberg said if there were an opportunity to start a girls team, she believes that girls would show interest.

Pinconning and SSC co-coach of the boys swim teams Jim Balten said he and Izzo have encouraged Pinconning to get a girls team together.

“Hopefully, that is in the process of happening,” he said.

Balten said he hopes to see boys from this year’s group compete again next year. “There were seven boys this season,” he said. “We told them to bring their friends next year.”

Thunberg said that PASD is grateful for the opportunity given to their students.

“This speaks volumes about the type of people you have working in your school district,” she said to the board.

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