Men’s and women’s swimming and diving prepares for invite weekend

The Allegheny men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams will head to the three-day Blue Devil Invitational in New York to compete in their first dual meet of the season. The upcoming meet will prepare the team for the conference meets later in the season and gage how the remainder of their season will play out.

Currently the men’s swimming and diving team has not won any meets while the women’s team has won two, out of nine season meets. Coach Kirk Kumbier said that the team is stronger than their record shows.

“Once we hit this championship format we have a little more depth and we can move people around on relays. Diving is also huge for us, especially on the women’s side. So that will make this meet exciting and fun,” Kumbier said.

This meet is different than the rest of the meets the team has competed in this year because it is an invitational. According to Danny Litwin, ’17, this meet will be very similar to the meets they will participate in for their conference meets.

“There will be nine teams there competing which will make it a welcomed change to our typical dual meet which is just us versus one other school,” Litwin said.

Garrett Devenney, ’16, said this weekend’s invite is the team’s mid-season meet and will help them get a better picture as to how they will do in their conference meets for the rest of the year.

“We’ve been training for ten weeks and it’s all been leading up to this meet,” Devenney said. “It’s a great opportunity for our team to get up and swim fast before we go on winter break. It’s a three-day meet with prelims and finals, which means if you place in the top 16 in the morning, you swim the same event that night. There are also a lot of teams at the Blue Devil Invitational.”

Kumbier said this meet will help the team figure out where they are so far this season in terms of progress and also help them look at where they need to move people swimmers to improve their times in relays.

“It’s a way for us to prepare for the rest of the season. It’s a good stepping-stone for the second semester. It’s a good time for the swimmers to rest a little bit. They can shave and put on a fast suit and really get some fast times to prepare for conference,” Kumbier said. “Those will be our seed times for conference, most likely. So that we are in some good heats for that meet.”

Megan Feeney, ’17, said although this meet is longer in duration than what they are used to this season, the team needs to stay positive because the team have potential to really excel.

“This weekend we need to stay positive and focus on one event at a time. Even though these three day meets can be tiring, we can still get up and have some great swims and dives,” Feeney said.

Although the team is looking forward to this weekend and the upcoming conference meets, Kumbier said the team needs to focus on one thing at a time.

“We focus on one thing at a time and just this meet for right now. We want to focus on having some fun this weekend and swimming really fast and diving clean and having the best meet possible. We need to also focus on individual and relay swims, one event at a time,” Kumbier said.

Kumbier said that last year this particular meet ended up being very successful for the team. They finished third and fourth overall but he believes they are stronger “across the board.”

Litwin said that he is most looking forward to the change in style of meet.

“It’s really fun to swim prelims, go back to the hotel and take a nap, them come back and swim fast at finals. There is nothing quite like the experience at finals. Everyone is pumped up and ready to go it makes everything much more interesting as well as exciting,” Litwin said.

According to Kumbier the team will travel to Florida this winter break for intense training based off of how they do in the Blue Devil Invitational.