Kingsway Fall Sports Wrap-Up: A Season for the Ages

By: Christian Lynch

Here are the stats:
– 7 teams qualified for the post-season.
– 5 Top Twenty in South Jersey rankings.
– 5 Division titles.
– 2 Gloucester County titles.
– 2 overall Tri-County Conference championships.
– 1 South Jersey Championship.
– 1 State Championship .
and a #1 ranking in South Jersey.

This is what Kingsway Regional High School was able to accomplish this fall. This haul would be impressive in a year’s time, let alone a 3 month span. Below is a rundown of what each team did:

Girls Volleyball: The “Fall Ballers”, under Coach Maggie Goodman, compiled a 7-17 record. This team of volleyball neophytes bonded as the season progressed and started to exhibit great teamwork. This was an extra special group of girls, as they demonstrated skills of a true volleyball player. They were able to implement a new attack system, which they mastered. This team absolutely raised the level of play for the program and set the standards high for the future. Looking towards next season, the girls are primed to make their presence felt in the conference.

Girls Tennis: Coach Michelle Carrocino led her girls to a fine season, one that caught the conference off guard. They qualified for the post-season, defeating Lacey 4-1 to advance to the 2nd round of the playoffs. They lost to eventual finalist Seneca in a nail biter, 3-2. The Lady Dragons finished with an outstanding 12-6 record.

Field Hockey: Year in and year out, they are one of the top programs in South Jersey, and this fall was no different. Coach Sara Lewis took a team that had graduated many stars and got them to grow throughout the season into a cohesive unit. They gained tremendous confidence as the season progressed. They made it all the way to the South Jersey finals, losing to the eventual state champion Ocean City. They finished with a record of 14-6. With a young team this past fall, look for them to continue their fine tradition of vying for South Jersey titles.

Girls Soccer: Under Coach John Kodluk, they won their first Tri-County Conference Royal Division title. An unheralded group that wasn’t favored by many outsiders to be a championship threat, they proved many people wrong, quietly racking up win after win. They ended their season in the South Jersey semifinals in a heartbreaking 2-1 loss to Central. They finished with a record of 15-6-2 and were ranked 7th in South Jersey. This team has most of their main cogs back next year and will be a force in South Jersey.

Boys Soccer: Coach John Green’s charges surprised their opponents with a multifaceted attack that demonstrated true team play. Opponents never knew which Dragon was going to strike at a given moment. The Dragons won the Tri-County Conference Royal Division title. They made it to the South Jersey Group 3 championship, losing 1-0 to Moorestown. They finished with an outstanding record of 19-4 and were ranked 5th in South Jersey. Being a young team, they will be championship contenders in 2013.

Girls Cross Country: They “Lady Harriers”, led by first year head coach Christine Dacchille, won the Tri-County Royal Dvision title (their first in 8 years) with a 6-0 record. They also won the Gloucester County championship and the Tri-County Conference overall championship. They finished 4th at the South Jersey Group 3 championships, qualifying for the State Group 3 championships. The ladies finished ranked 8th in South Jersey. With only one senior this year, they should be in a similar position next fall.

Football: Coach Tony Barchuk’s were a big surprise in South Jersey, exhibiting a powerful ground attack, timely offense, tough effort in “the trenches”, and solid defensive play. The “gridironers” garnered a share of the West Jersey Royal Division title. They then defeated favored Moorestown in a shootout, 52-47 and then upended 2nd seed Lacey, 42-28. They made it all the way to the South Jersey Group 4 championship, eventually losing to a Timber Creek team comprised of a multitude of Division I signees. The Dragons finished with an 8-4 record and were ranked 9th in South Jersey. Not surprisingly, Coach Barchuk was honored during the season as Coach of the Week by the Philadelphia Eagles. Also of note, the football team continued to get great support from the Dragons cheerleading squad, led by Coach Dawn Marchetti.

Boys Cross Country: Coach Christian Lynch’s squad simply had the greatest cross country season in school history! They started by winning the South Jersey Open Division 3 title. They then defeated defending champion Highland for the Tri-County Royal Division title. They then picked up the Gloucester County and Tri-County overall championships. They upended archrival Ocean City for their 2nd consecutive South Jersey Group 3 championship. Then,in an upset, they defeated Morristown 110-155 for their first State Group 3 championship. This was the first time a boys team from Gloucester County has ever won a team cross country state title. They finished a respectable 11th at the New Jersey Meet of Champions. They were invited to the prestigious Nike Regional Championships in New York, finishing 20th out of the top 45 teams in the northeast US. All of that led to a final ranking of #1 in South Jersey (the first boys athletic team at Kingsway to finish in that position).

Looking at this impressive list of accomplishments, it’s fair to say that Kingsway enjoyed arguably the best sports season of any school in South Jersey this season. Supported by long-time athletic director, Joe Galliera, the Dragons showed tremendous heart and pride. Furthermore, the energy and excitement gathered this fall bodes well for the winter and spring teams, as those teams look to keep the ball rolling. Expect the fire that the Dragons have been breathing to continue burning brightly!

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Swedesboro NJ
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