Swimming & Diving Defeat Rhode Island On Senior Day

Gabriel Anton, Reporter

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After getting their feet wet again last month at Northeastern, the CCSU Swimming and Diving team returned in spectacular fashion to the victory lane scoring two wins against returning Northeast Conference rivals Long Island University and the University of Rhode Island in an away and a home match this weekend.

On Saturday the team traveled to Brooklyn to hit the waters at LIU, defeating them by the smallest of margins with a score of 133 to 129. One event’s worth of leaderboard points separated the victory from LIU. The Blue Devils had proven to be the more focused and cohesive team.

On Sunday, the team hosted a Senior Night at the Jack Suydam Natatorium on campus against URI in celebration of the strong senior talent that had to lead them to victory over the past seasons. Senior swimmers that competed at the natatorium for the last time on Sunday included Grace Fredericks, Keelin Kendall, Erika Maercklein, Gracie Regan, and Ivy Milne and divers include Kirsten Bednarz and Reagan Kenney. CCSU won 183-117. They won 11 out of the 16 events.

Freestyle events continued to be strengths for Central as their skills were on full display on both days of competition as they won four out of their six freestyle events against LIU and all six against URI. Maercklein was part of both freestyle relay teams that secured first place in the event. She along with fellow senior Grace Regan, sophomore Destiny Johnson, and freshman Shannon Welcome defeated LIU in the 200-yard freestyle. Against URI, a team of her, Katie Czulewicz, Jeannette King, and Simona Visinksi took the first spot in the 400-yard relay.

Maercklein went to take first place in the 500-yard freestyle and the 1,000-yard freestyle events against URI. She also won the 500-yard event against LIU.

Mariana Espino and Alex Lindgren won the 100-yard breaststroke against URI, garnering the first and second spots respectively. Lindgren went on to win the 200-yard event supported by Regan and Abby Bacon.

For the butterfly events, Welcome fought and won against both LIU and URI, garnering the second-place spot in the all the butterfly events she competed in this weekend.

Lindgren took control of the 200-yard Individual Medley events, scoring first and second at URI and LIU respectively. A team of McMahon, Espino, Mann, and King took first place against URI in the 200-yard medley relay while a team of Perrin, Lindgren, Welcome, and Visinksi followed up with second place.

While the diving team did not participate against LIU, they did demonstrate their talent and served the team well on Sunday against URI for senior night. The two senior divers, Bednarz and Kenney, took the fourth and fifth place and made it on the leaderboard with Rachel Pinsky taking sixth in the 1-meter diving event. Kenney took the third spot against URI in the 3-meter diving event, garnering 3 points for the Blue Devils.

The new year sits well with the Central Swimming and Diving team as these two wins add to an already great record this season. They travel to East Meadow, NY for their National Eastern Conference Championships where they look to continue their winning streak and dominate freestyle, breaststroke, and medley events against their NEC rivals. The event is scheduled for Feb. 19-22.