Swimmers Take Tough Bruin Beating

    After taking second place overall out of 22 teams at the Speedo Cup in Long Beach, Calif. before winter break, the UCSD women’s swimming and diving team returned from vacation and held its own in a relay-only meet against University of Utah and Wagner College on Jan. 5, only to be blown out of the water by the UCLA Bruins with a score of 57-104 in the Tritons’ latest match on Jan. 6.

    Jason campa/Guardian file
    Though the Triton swimmers suffered a rough 57-104 loss to UCLA on Jan. 6, it is a stroke in the right direction from last season’s crusher of 25-205 by the Bruins.

    Against UCLA, the Tritons could not challenge the tough Division I competition in the Bruin pool, but were able to work on their times in preparation for their return to Long Beach for the Pacific Coast Swimming Conference Championships starting on Feb. 7.

    “”The divers were on their first meet after break and they were showing that they have gotten a little rusty,”” head coach Scott McGihon said. “”So we needed that meet to shake the rust off.””

    Most of the events in the meet against UCLA were relays, but the individual standouts for the Tritons were freshman Jennifer Lappe, who placed second in both diving events, and senior Susan Bell, who notched a 4 minute, 42.75 second mark in the 400-meter freestyle.

    One possible reason for the lackluster performance against the tough Bruin squad is a lack of preparation, as the Tritons came to Los Angeles for the event on only 24 hours of rest, just a day after a tough meet against University of Utah and Wagner College at Canyonview Pool.

    At their first home meet since a Nov. 11 win over Cal State Bakersfield, the Triton women took first place in the 300 medley relay and finished second in four other events. The 300 medley team, made up of sophomore Kendall Bohn, sophomore Aubrey Panis and senior Lauren O’Neill, turned in a time of 3:02.11 for UCSD’s only win of the day.

    The second-place finishes came in the 600 butterfly relay, the 600 backstroke relay, the 600 breaststroke relay and the 500 freestyle relay. Bohn was a part of the 600 butterfly team and the 600 breaststroke team as well as winning the 300 medley, while Panis also took part in the 600 backstroke event.

    Bell and O’Neill, along with five other graduating seniors, will be honored on Senior Day when the Tritons host Loyola Marymount University on Jan. 13. The graduating male swimmers and divers will be recognized as well.

    “”This year’s senior class is really strong and it’s going to be a huge loss for next year,”” Panis said. “”And even outside of the water, the seniors play a huge role in the team chemistry.””

    After the PCSC Championships Feb. 7-10, in which the Triton women have placed first for the last four years, the team will look to advance to the NCAA Championships in Buffalo, N.Y., on March 14-17, where they will try to improve on last year’s third-place overall finish.

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