RBHS swimmer Ronnie Macchia (center) flies off the block at the start of the 100-yard butterfly on Jan. 15 during the 12-team Riverside-Brookfield High School.Invitational. | Sara Janz/Contributor

Riverside-Brookfield High School sophomore Drew Rosa has a swimming role model in older brother Michael, a 2019 graduate and three-year IHSA state qualifier who competed for the University of Notre Dame.

“He encouraged me to start it. I originally wanted to play basketball, but he was big into swimming, all of my brothers were,” said Drew, the fourth of five brothers in his family. “Once I started it, I found that it was pretty fun. I just stuck with it.” 

Now Drew’s name is alongside Michael’s on the RBHS record board at the sophomore level.

At the RBHS Invitational on Jan. 15, the Bulldogs’ 200-yard medley relay of sophomore Cooper Marrs (backstroke), freshman Nick Marrero (breaststroke), Rosa (butterfly) and sophomore Hayden Marrs (freestyle) placed third at 1 minute, 42.52 seconds, a time that broke their previous sophomore school record of 1:43.08 from four days earlier at home against Plainfield Co-op. Entering the season, the record was 1:43.79 from 2013.

“I think we’ll be able to go even faster at conference and sectionals, so that’s going to be exciting,” Rosa said.

Senior diver Harrison Nolan, Rosa and Marrero were individual champions. The Bulldogs (169 points) finished fourth overall in the 12-team field, just three points behind third-place Oswego Co-op. Oak Park and River Forest High School won with 242 points.

“I think [the 200 medley swimmers] were a little bit more excited because of the size of the meet and better competition,” RBHS coach Mike Laurich said.

“We had it kind of rough over break with COVID and everything. We’re back on track now after last Saturday, but it took us a good week to get back to where we wanted to be.”  

During the invitational’s diving competition on Jan. 14, Nolan (548.90 points) broke his 2020 pool record of 542.85. Nolan then won the Hinsdale Central Diving Invitational on Jan. 15.

During the swimming portion of the RBHS Invitational on Jan 15, Rosa won the 200 individual medley (2:00.31) and the Bulldogs went one-two in the 100 breast with Marrero (1:01.96) edging Rosa (1:01.99) 

Michael Rosa holds RBHS varsity records for the 100 breast (57.14 in 2018) and 200 IM (1:55.36 in 2019). He was a three-time state qualifier in the breaststroke, taking 11th as a junior and 10th as a senior. He reached state in the 200 IM as a senior.

As a freshman, Drew Rosa made the sophomore record board with his winning 200 IM (1:57.16) and 100 breast (58.88) at the season-ending conference meet. 

Had there been a state series, Rosa’s 100 breast time there would have qualified for state (59.35 cut). He’s also beaten the 1:56.89 200 IM cut during club season.

The 200 medley relay state cut is 1:37.02.

“We’ve just got to put in the work and hopefully things will work out at the end of the season,” Rosa said. “[At conference in 2021] I won the IM and the breaststroke so that was pretty cool, but probably getting the record with my team is the best thing that’s happened so far.”