ROCKINGHAM — Matteo Rubbiano, a senior swimmer, has been named the Official Richmond County Male Student-Athlete of the Week presented by Rockingham NC Self Storage.
A foreign exchange student from Italy, Rubbiano has spent this school year attending Richmond Senior High School and getting involved with Raider athletics.
Following a breakout performance in his first swim meet for the Raiders, Rubbiano secured his first recognition.
Winter sport: Swimming
Events: 50, 100-yard freestyles, relays
Varsity experience: 1 season
Other sports: Soccer
CLASSROOM CREDITS WITH MATTEO RUBBIANO
Spending a year abroad nearly 4,500 miles from his hometown of Turin, Italy, Rubbiano is making the most of his time in Richmond County. Staying with host parents Ashleigh and Jonathan Buie, the former a teacher at Richmond, Rubbiano has immersed himself in school and sports.
During the first nine-week grading period, Rubbiano, an honor student, made all As. This semester he’s taking Annual Honors, Chemistry I Honors, Drafting I Honors and Advanced Weight Training Honors.
He’s helping put together the yearbook and said he’s considering playing tennis in the spring. He played soccer for the Raiders this past fall.
“I’ve enjoyed my time here so far,” Rubbiano said. “There are some things that are similar and different in school between Italy and here. In Italy we have more freedom to choose our classes, but we don’t rotate classrooms there.
“I’ve met so many great people here,” he added. “School is more strict in Italy, but the teachers are more friendly in the US. I am proud of myself for getting straight As and doing well with my schoolwork while playing sports.”
“MAKING A SPLASH” WITH MATTEO RUBBIANO
With several years of club swimming experience, Rubbiano was the top point earner for the Raiders during their first meet of the season last week at the Leach Aquatic Center.
One of just three Richmond swimmers to compete in four events, Rubbiano competed in two individual races and two relay races. Between his two solo performances, he collected 25 points.
As part of two third-place relay finishes, Rubbiano helped the Raiders collect 48 more points. As a team, Richmond finished third overall with 135 points.
Rubbiano’s best finish of the meet was second place in the 100-yard freestyle race. He clocked in at 57.82 seconds for 13 points behind winner Grant Larsen (49.45 seconds).
In the open 50-yard freestyle, Rubbiano placed third with a time of 25.90 seconds. Adding 12 more points, he was just 0.33 seconds from taking second place. Both times were personal records for Rubbiano.
The Raiders took third in the 200-yard medley and 200-yard freestyle relays. In the medley event, Rubbiano swam the breaststroke in the second leg in 32.42 seconds as the team finished in 2:19.66.
Serving as the anchor in the 200-yard freestyle, he cut through the water for the fastest leg time on the team (25.96 seconds). That strong finish put the Raiders’ team time at 1:57.49.
Both of Richmond’s swimming teams will compete in their second meet of the season on Wednesday in Raeford. The first event will begin at 6:15 p.m.
RAPID RESPONSE VIDEO WITH MATTEO RUBBIANO
Rubbiano shares during his video interview about his success in the pool, his favorite event and some of his most memorable experiences so far this school year.
The Richmond Observer will publish two more Official Richmond County Student-Athletes of the Week next week.