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Thursday, Apr 18, 2024

Swimming Starts Season with Success

Author: David Lindholm Assistant Sports Editor

The Middlebury Swimming and Diving teams opened their season with success on Saturday, Nov. 17, competing at Wesleyan against both the Cardinals and Springfield College. Both the men and the women beat both teams, and accomplished two goals: to get every member of the team into a race, and to earn a positive result.

The meet against Wesleyan for the women was won quite easily, by a score of 213-66. The 200 Medley Relay was indicative of the meet as a whole, as Middlebury had its three relay teams finish before Wesleyan's top group finished. Springfield was much closer, falling only by a score of 156-130. There were many tight finishes and the Panthers managed to pull out a win. The men won both of their meets by a substantial margin, defeating Wesleyan 187-96 and Springfield 169-111.

"We saw some pretty impressive times for this part of the season," said Coach Peter Solomon. "Our first objective was to get everybody to the meet and into the lineup, and we were able to do that. With 65 members on the team it was a challenge, but we did that."

Solomon was also happy with the team's ability to "swim smart races" at such an early point in the season. Some of the success can be attributed to the contributions of a very strong senior class, including All-Americans and swimmers and divers who qualified for the National meet last season. There are a total of 17 seniors on the two teams, who form a "deep and talented class." This group of seniors includes All-American diver Derek Chicarilli and strong swimmers Scott "the donkey king" Strickler and Grayson "the fighting beaver" Stuntz. On the women's side, National Qualifiers Mandy Smeal and Amanda Macomber will be among the senior swimmers leading the team.

There are also many first-year additions to the team that are sure to help in this season and in the future. Diver Blake Lyons and swimmers David Hawkins and Jason Korsmeyer will look to make an impact for the men. Diver Laura Shaw and swimmers Lauren King, Leigh Taylor, Kate Miller and Kelly Quinn will be valuable additions to the women's team.

The next meet for both teams will take place this Saturday at Amherst.