Swimming sweeps Baldwin-Wallace

Last weekend concluded the regular season for men’s and women’s swimming before the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) Championships Feb. 11–13.

“It was our first weekend [swimming] back to back [meets], which was tiring, but I think we did pretty well,” said Megan Knox, ’11.

AlleghenySports.com - Megan Knox, ’11, claimed two victories at the final regular season meets against Baldwin–Wallace and Edinboro.

“It also serves as a good simulation of our championship meet, where swimmers will be swimming six sessions over three days,” said Assistant Coach Steve VanDuzer.

On Friday, both the Allegheny men and women’s swimming teams defeated Baldwin–Wallace on the first day of the back-to-back meet weekend. Both Gator teams fell to Edinboro the following day.

Against Baldwin-Wallace, the men’s swimming team won 150.5–92.5. Three swimmers earned double victories: Matt Gauthier, ’13, Brandon Intrieri, ’13, and Josh Sesek, ’10.

Gauthier won the 1000 free and the 500 free while Sesek took first in the 200 IM and 200 breast stroke.

Intrieri posted wins with the 200 free and the 100 free.

The 400 medley relay team of Sesek, Tyler Torbet, ’13, Matt Ehmann, ’12, and Mirno Pasquali, ’12, were victorious as well.

Pasquali also won the 200 backstroke while teammate Christian Steinwarz, ’13, was victorious in the 200 butterfly.

The women’s team destroyed Baldwin–Wallace by taking all of the swimming events and losing only the diving competition on Friday.

Knox, Molly Durot, ’13 and Joanna Wieckowska, ’13, all picked up two individual victories.

Wiekowska was the top finisher in the 200 IM and 200 backstroke while Durot touched first in the 200 butterfly and the 500 free.

Knox took the 1000 free and the 100 free.

On Saturday against Edinboro, the men’s team recorded a 145–117 decision. Intrieri and Sesek both posted two individual victories for the second day in a row.

Intrieri took the 50 free and 100 butterfly, which secured him the honor of NCAC Swimmer of the Week. Sesek touched first in the 100 and 200 breakstroke.

Along with Intrieri and Sesek, Mirno Pasquali and Kyle Lincoln, ’13, edged out the win for the 200 medley relay to begin the meet.

The 200 free relay team of Intrieri, Pasquali, Gauthier and Tim O’Brien, ’12, also took first place. Gauthier also won the 1000 free.

The women’s team fell 148–114 to Edinboro, winning only five events.
Knox once again took two individual events: the 200 free and the 500 free.  Ashley Whitehead, ’11, took first in the 50 freestyle while Ariana Lyons, ’13, clocked in first as well in the 100 free. Wieckowska touched first in the 100 backstroke.

Now the game plan is to taper until the NCAC Championships, which involves a less grueling practice schedule and more time spent resting.

“There’s less emphasis on hard swimming,” Knox said. “We focus on the little things.”

The Gators’ strategy is somewhat different from other colleges’ swimming programs, but the swimmers feel that this may give them the advantage in the season’s final conference competition.

“Some teams taper mid-season to qualify for national times,” Knox explained. “We always go hard all season to do well at this meet. We build our whole season up to this meet.”

“Once we get some rest, taper, I think I can definitely make [national qualifying] times,” Intrieri said.

The stakes for this meet are high: Every team in the conference goes to the NCAC Championships, so competition is tougher than ever.  Additionally, the conference championship is one of the final opportunites for swimmers to shoot for national qualifying times.

“I’m really excited to see what these times are…it’s going to be fun,” Intrieri said.

“I think the experienced upperclassmen, who really know what to expect from this type of meet, will capitalize on every opportunity they are given,” VanDuzer said. “But I also think the underclassmen, who through the season have been adjusting to the rigors of college training, will really see their hard work pay off through big time drops.”

The Gators will travel to Canton, Ohio,to compete at the NCAC Championships next weekend, Feb. 11–13.