On Thursday, November 4, 2021, Swimming & Diving and Water Polo Coach Chuck Elrick captured his 1,000th combined win at Hopkins. Chuck reached this improbable milestone in his 39th year with the School, which will also be his last as he will retire following the 2021–2022 school year.
Win #1,000 was achieved in dramatic fashion as the Hopkins Boys Water Polo team defeated Hydra Water Polo Club 12-11 in overtime.
The milestone is fitting as Chuck was responsible for establishing the water polo program (then co-ed) at Hopkins in 1996. The program has since grown exponentially.
While Chuck remembers all of his milestones fondly—like his 100th win on February 17, 1990 or win number four hundred during a season where his daughter Elizabeth swam and played water polo—what he truly cherishes are the relationships he’s built with players and coaches through the years.
“It’s been a dream to come in every day,” said Chuck. “It’s just pure enjoyment.”
Looking back on an illustrious career, it’s the small stories of swimmers or water polo players coming into their own or overcoming obstacles that truly stand out to him.
“Any success I have is due to the successes of my students. They are the ones who put in the hard work and rose to the occasion time and time again,” Chuck said.
That the 1000th win came at a home game at Hopkins has made things extra special. Chuck, who joined Hopkins during the 1983–84 season, worked directly with architects to design the Bud Erich Swimming Pool facility, which opened in 1986. As the home crowd leapt to their feet when the final goal was scored, Chuck took in the moment in the place where it all began. He didn’t have much time to reminisce, however, because the Hopkins Boys Water Polo team immediately threw him into the pool to celebrate.
“Hopkins has given me the opportunity to do something that I truly love doing,” said Chuck. “The School and this community have been such strong supporters of these programs, and I am grateful,” said Chuck.
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Chuck was recently featured in CT Insider
which discussed his 1,000th milestone.
Enjoy these pictures from the milestone-clinching game vs. Hydra.
Photos by Johnathon Henninger