The New Paltz men’s and women’s swimming teams squared off against Vassar College on Nov. 16 and Hamilton College on Nov. 17. The Hawks fell to Vassar on the men and women sides 117-143 and 94-163, respectively, while also falling to Hamilton on the women’s side 98-181. The men came out with the lone victory of the week, defeating Hamilton 137-118.
“Going into the Vassar meet, on paper we were supposed to lose badly,” said third-year Chelsea Angulas.
“Knowing this did not stop us from doing what we train to do, race. We got in the pool and raced the other team, and for a while gave them a run for their money,” Angulas said.
Against Vassar, the women’s side had multiple standout performances. In the 200-yard medley relay fourth-years Katie Donlevy and Nicole Lee, Angulas and second-year Lindsay Kranitz edged out Vassar by a tenth of a second with a time of 1:52.00.
The women’s side was also able to secure two individual victories as Angulas led the way in the 100-yard backstroke with a first place time of 1:01.10. Donlevy finished first in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 56.38 seconds.
The men came out with multiple individual victories. First-year Nolan West and second-year Jared Finn secured the top two finishes in the 50-yard freestyle with times of 22.76 and 23.01 respectively. They would each follow up their top finishes with successful swims later in the day, earning the top two finishes in the 100-yard freestyle as well. Finn finished with a time of 49.91, while West was close behind at 49.96.
The men’s side added a group victory in the 400-yard freestyle relay consisting of Finn, West, first-year Mitchell Chappell and fourth-year Matthew Kessler with a time of 3:18.03.
“It’s always fun to swim against teams every year to see how we stack up compared to last year and Vassar is always a great benchmark,” West said. “They generally have the same skill as us year after year and we really looked forward to swimming against a team that is so close to us.”
However the highlight of the meet was first-year Ethan Bonney’s performance in the 1,650-yard freestyle with a time of 17:15.24.
“[Bonney] did a really great job this weekend and really showed us what he is capable of,” Finn said. “Within 1 second of Vassar’s Mier every single lap, Ethan just out touched him for the win in the most exciting mile I’ve ever seen. We had the whole pool going nuts for 66 laps. It was really fun to watch.”
At Hamilton College, the men’s side came out with six first place victories including a time of 1:32.44 in a 200-yard freestyle relay victory consisting of West, Finn, Chappell and Kessler.
The men also collected five individual victories: Bonney with a time of 11:08.31 in the 1000-yard freestyle, West with a time of 1:52.35 in the 200-yard freestyle, first-year Luke Gamboli with a time of 2:14.55 in the 200-yard butterfly, Finn with a time of 50.56 in the 100-yard freestyle and fourth-year Barrett Celecki with a time of 5:09.42 in the 500-yard freestyle.
Although defeated, the women tallied two relay victories with a time of 1:54.40 in the 200-yard medley relay including Angulas, Donlevy, Kranitz and fourth-year Jaimie Kaefer and the 200-yard freestyle relay (1:43.41) with Angulas, Donlevy, Kranitz and third-year Sarah Crespo. They also added a pair of individual victories in the 100-yard breaststroke and 100-yard freestyle by Kranitz (1:09.90) and Lee (57.41) respectively.
“Maybe it didn’t look like it from the outside, but we saw this past weekend as a total success,” Finn said. “The girls lost both meets and the guys lost to Vassar and just beat out Hamilton. But we really did give it our all like we always do, and these were just two good teams.”
The Hawks will now look ahead to The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) Invite where they will be participating in three meets between Nov. 30 and Dec. 2.