The SUNY New Paltz Women’s Swim team kicked off the 2012-13 season with a win at their first dual meet against SUNY Oswego and hopes to work toward taking home a SUNYAC title during the championships this year, fourth-year co-captain Anna Jakubek said.
The women’s team has had one regular season dual meet so far, but Jakubek said she is predicting they will have a great season.
Third-year co-captain Chelsea Allocco said one reason this season is so different than last year’s is the fact that there are substantially more underclassmen.
With the 10 first-years on the team, Allocco said they now have more opportunities for advancement, which gives them a greater chance to excel this season.
“I think that this season we can definitely do better than last year. We are a strong and deep team, and I think that we can better our SUNYAC placement, and hopefully get more girls to the national level,” she said. “With this group of freshmen girls, we are so much better off than last year, and I think it will make a huge difference. We should have a fantastic season.”
Jakubek said not only does this year’s team have a great dynamic, but they have spent more time on nutrition and exercise during the preseason, allowing for each member to be more on point.
“This year we stepped up as a team and devoted a lot of our effort in the preseason toward getting in great shape so that we were ready for the start of the regular season,” she said. “We also started focusing on promoting healthier eating habits on our team, which we know will make a huge difference in the way we train, race and improve throughout the season.”
Jakubek said she has also seen an improvement in training participation and enthusiasm this season.
“In terms of practices, our girls have really stepped up this year, training hard in the pool and the weight room, as well as maintaining a positive attitude day in and day out,” she said. “Mental mindset is a huge part of swimming, and we feed off of each others’ energy, so it’s really important to stay positive every day no matter how hard it gets.”
Jakubek said the team has become stronger through emphasis on stroke technique and core strengthening work earlier in the semester.
“I feel [this training has] definitely helped keep our strokes together and build our strength for when the workouts started to increase in difficulty,” she said.
Jakubek said she believes that this year, her team will take home the SUNYAC title.
“We know we have what it takes,” she said. “It is going to require every person on this team to give 110 percent every day, but we’re willing to do anything — it isn’t going to be just one person that wins it all for us, it has to be culmination of every lady hawk putting forth their best. If we can do that, I have no doubts.”