Swim and Dive crushes Claremont-Mudd-Scripps in season opener at home.
On this past Saturday, Halloween day, the men’s and women’s swim and dive teams started off their 2015–16 season on a positive note as both teams emerged from Halloween without fatalities and with dual-meet victories over Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at UCSD’s Canyonview Aquatic Center.
The Triton men’s squad came through with a big win as their season opener ended with a final score of 203–95. Not to be left outdone, the Triton women’s squad pulled through with an even-bigger victory margin as they ended their season opener with a final score of 242–49. The day ended for the Tritons with a decisive victory for both squads.
The UCSD swimmers and divers were able to win 28 of the 32 events that they competed in on Halloween, and they took the maximum amount of points with placements in the top three or two positions in 14 of 28 individual events and three of the four relay events.
UCSD was also able to come away with four NCAA provisional qualifying marks. Sophomore Stephanie Sin swept her distance freestyle races with times of 10:25.05 in the 1000m and 5:05.87 in the 500m, landing two of the NCAA provisional qualifying marks. Senior Dari Watkins was also able to produce a mark as she went 2:04.88 in the 200m butterfly. Senior Captain Cole Heale also earned a provisional qualifying mark as he sprinted 20.80 in the 50m freestyle. Needing a score of 255, freshman Brooke Abrantes was just shy of getting an NCAA qualifying mark, earning a 248.63 for the one-meter board and 244.58 on the three-meter board.
Watkins, Heale, Sin and Abrantes were all winners of a pair of individual events, with Watkins placing first in the 200 free, Heale in the 100 free, Sin in both her events and Abrantes in both diving events. Senior Colleen Daley was able to win a pair of individual events as well in the sprints (24.21, 52.90), and she was joined by sophomore Julia Toronczak who won the 100 (58.38) and 200 backstroke (2:07.73), junior Zachary Yong who won the 200 breaststroke (2:05.62) and 200 individual medley (1:56.48) and freshman Alejandro Ortiz who won the distance races (9:43.50, 4:42.13).
Individual event winners for UCSD included junior Julian Jacobs (100 back, 50.74), junior Michael Cohn (200 back, 1:50.93), senior AJ Zaval (100 breast, 58.23), sophomore Angie Phetbenjakul (100 breast, 1:06.50), senior Maddy Huttner (200 IM, 2:08.87), sophomore Jayna Wittenbrink (100 fly, 57.67), and freshmen Lily Maxfield (200 breast, 2:22.32) and Garrett Tse (100 fly, 50.30).
Toronczak, junior Jaimie Bryan, Wittenbrink and Daley were the fastest women’s 200 medley relay (1:47.68). The women’s 400 relay, which consisted of Daley, junior Catherine Woo, freshman Reagan Eickert and Huttner, placed first. For the men, senior Michael Leung, Zavala, Tse and Heale formed the fastest men’s 200 medley relay (1:32.51). Sophomore Samuel Lee, sophomore Austin Takeda, Leung and Heale formed the men’s 400 free relay and concluded the meet with a 3:07.39 time.
As this was the UCSD swimming and diving season opener, it was the debut of many Tritons and the start of their sport careers here at UCSD. The Triton freshmen who made their college debuts on Halloween included Abrantes, Eickert, Maxfield, Ortiz, Tse, Victoria Adee, Delainey Carlin, Eishlee Jasa, Will Knox, Emily Lambert, Lindsey Miller, and Patty Sullivan. Transfers Johnny Bloom, Aaron Clancy, Alex Rodman, and Kawei Tan were also able to make their first appearances as Tritons at their home pool.
“I think [the coaches] set us up, they put a lot of pressure on our shoulders for us to rise to the challenge…They put the challenge out there for us to swim our best,” Heale told the UCSD Athletics Department. “I’m loving this year. Our team is meshing really well and everyone — men and women — are getting along fantastically.”
This was the eighth year in a row that UCSD and NCAA Division-III enemy Claremont-Mudd-Scripps have competed against each other. The Tritons remain unbeaten in all of these matchups.
The Triton men’s and women’s swimmers will next compete in dual meets against Division-I rival UC Santa Barbara on Saturday, Nov. 7.