Swimming Starts Season Strong

Photo by Holly Lipka.

After competing against Vassar College and Ramapo College in addition to making an appearance in the New York University (NYU) Fall Invitational, both the Men’s and Women’s swimming teams are sitting on a record of 1-1.

Hawks Head Coach Scott Whitbeck said it is nice to get up and race against decent competition in October.

“Going back-to-back meets in October is pretty tough and I’m happy with our performance and with our effort,” he said.

On Friday, Oct. 30, the Hawks faced Vassar College on the road in Kregse Pool. The men’s team captured seven events in this meet leading them to a 149-132 victory over the Brewers.

The foursome of second-year swimmer Caleb Treadwell and fourth-year co-Captains Ryan Lindgren, Ethan Cooke and Will Koenig began the meet by winning the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:40.48. The meet ended with another relay victory in the 400 freestyle relay by the team of third-year Austin Kowalsky, Treadwell, Cooke, and Koenig with a time of 3:22.77.

Hawks third-year swimmer Rob Cahn won the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:52.03 and the 500 freestyle with a time of 5:08.15. Second-year swimmer Barrett Celecki made his collegiate distance debut in the 1,000 freestyle and captured a first-place finish with a time of 10:40.62.

Other individual first-place finishes included second-year swimmer Marc Piliero in the 100 backstroke with a time of 58.14 and Kowalsky in the 50 freestyle with a time of 22.55.

“Vassar was closer than we thought it would be because they decided to score diving against us despite the fact that we don’t have divers,” Lindgren said. “That win felt good.”

On the women’s side, the Hawks fell to the Brewers 163-128, without the points from diving, the Hawks kept a close score of 134-128.

The next day, the women bested Ramapo  College with a score of 150-107.

Kaefer won both the 500 freestyle and 200 medley with times of 5:28.27 and 2:15.95 respectively. Her second event however, was marked as exhibition.

Other winning individual events against the Roadrunners were third-year swimmer Ann Fici in the 1,000 freestyle (11:28.20), fourth-year co-Captain Cassidy Griger in the 200 free (2:01.26), first-year Kaleigh O’Halloran in the 100 backstroke (1:03.57), second-year Megan Joseph in the 100 breaststroke (1:11.51), fourth-year co-Captain Maggie Heaton in the 200 butterfly (2:18.64), fourth-year Casey O’Connor in the 200 backstroke, and first-year Katie Donlevy in the 200 breaststroke (2:33.59).

The foursome of Lee, second-year Megan Joseph, Heaton, and Griger also won the 400 medley relay with a time of 4:10.02.

“We have great team unity,” Women’s fourth-year co-Captain Ella Graffin said. “Our women’s and men’s team train together and we are close friends and supportive of each other. This really shows at our meets because throughout the duration of the meet we are cheering each other on during races, and pumping each other up. We keep each other positive and motivated to swim fast.”

On Friday, Nov. 6 and Saturday, Nov. 7 the Hawks made an appearance at the NYU Fall Invitational. Both the men and the women placed third out of three teams at NYU’s Palladium Athletic Facility.

“NYU and Stevens are ranked second and seventh in the country respectively so the competition was really tough but I think we stepped up and made the best of it,” Lindgren said.

Graffin also felt that the teams swam well.

“I’m really excited for this season,” she said. “Our team has great depth on both the men’s and women’s side, and it’s a special group that I feel lucky to have spent the past three years with, and into my final year as a senior.”

Whitbeck said some highlights of the Invitational included the relay races, particularly the foursome of O’Halloran, Donlevy, third-year Aimee Del Favero, and Griger in the 400 freestyle relay. They finished second with a time of 3:44.04 besting both foursomes from Stevens Institute of Technology and the “B” relay from NYU. Lee, O’Connor, McCulloch, and Griger also recorded a third place finish in the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:55.36.

“We had some decent individual swims throughout the weekend, I think we definitely faced two of the best teams in the country,” Whitbeck said. “Relay-wise, we didn’t challenge them too much on the men’s side, but we actually beat Stevens’ in a couple of the women’s relays.”

Whitbeck said that he was happy with the performance of both teams this past weekend.

“Don’t get too caught up in the wins and losses, this is all about us getting better every week and facing good competition and practice better racing,” he said. “I’m not concerned with how we win or how we lose, but how we step up and race and how we motivate ourselves and how we keep ourselves focused on our goals for the end of the season.”

On Tuesday, Nov. 10, the Hawks participated in 10th Annual Ted Mullin “Leave it in the Pool” Hour of Power Relay for Sarcoma Research, sponsored by Carleton College swimming and diving teams. During the event, participating teams swam continuous relays with the stroke of their choice for an hour in honor those who are or have struggled with cancer including former Carleton swimmer Edward H. “Ted” Mullin, who passed away from synovial sarcoma, a rare soft tissue cancer, in September 2006.

The Hawks will next host Pace University in their final home meet of the 2015 calendar year on Saturday, Nov. 14 at Elting Pool.