Oct. 10, 2012
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. – The 2012-13 swimming and diving season is underway, and already five of the Patriot League’s eight schools have faced some kind of competition just 10 days into October.
The season opened Sept. 28 with American taking first place at the Potomac Relays in Washington, D.C. A day later, Bucknell began its 2012-13 campaign with a strong showing in an unscored meet versus UMBC. Junior Mike Nicholson, one of the League’s top performers a season ago, showed he should be factor again this season.
The first scored dual meets of the season were last weekend, and both academies were impressive. Army hosted Boston College, Rowan and Vermont at West Point Oct. 5, with the last of those three opponents bringing only the women. The Black Knights swept both competitions, with diver Chris Nguyen leading the way for the men with a sweep of the boards. Freshman Nat Beale won three races in her collegiate debut.
Navy dove in Oct. 6 with a tri-meet against George Mason and Loyola Maryland, and the Mids came away with both victories on each side. A pair of Navy men swept the League’s male weekly awards, with Zach Ingold claiming the Male Swimmer of the Week nod and Ben Freedman taking the Male Diver of the Week award. Both are juniors.
Holy Cross was the fifth League member to see any action in the first two weeks of the season. The Crusaders competed last weekend at the Assumption Pentathlon.
American and Holy Cross are back in the pool this weekend. The Eagles will compete against D.C. rivals Catholic and Georgetown over two days beginning Friday and ending Saturday. The Crusaders take part in their first dual of the season Saturday when they host Fairfield at the recently renovated Hart Pool.
Patriot League Notebook
• Navy opened its season with impressive victories for both the men and women over George Mason and Loyola Maryland. Both the men and women are the defending League champions, with the men aiming for their record 10th championship this February.
• Bobby Ballance picked up a pair of first-place finishes as American performed well at its season-opening Potomac Relay Invitational Sept. 28. His wins came in the 300-yard back and 400 medley relays, while he added a runner-up showing with three teammates in the 800 free relay.
• The two Navy teams combined to win 29 of 32 events against Loyola and George Mason, with freshmen picking up 12 individual event victories.
• Bucknell freshmen Emma Levendoski opened her collegiate career with three first-place finishes in an unscored meet versus UMBC. She won the 50, 100 and 200 back races, and accounted for three of her team’s seven first-place showings.
• Freshman Kegan Gerard (American) swept the one- and three-meter dives at the Potomac Relays in his first collegiate meet. His top score was 168.30 points in the one-meter event.
• Army freshman Chris Szekely won the 200 and 500 frees as the Black Knights swept Boston College and Rowan in a tri-meet Oct. 5. He clocked a 1:43.01 in the 200 and 4:42.26 in the 500.
• Colgate, Lafayette and Lehigh will open their slates later this month. The Mountain Hawks open Oct. 19 with West Chester before visiting the Raiders in the first showdown of the season between League teams Oct. 27. Lafayette opens Oct. 27 in Baltimore in a quad meet at Loyola Maryland that also features Drexel and Seton Hall.
Patriot League Weekly Awards
MALE SWIMMER OF THE WEEK
ZACH INGOLD, NAVY Jr., Hornell, N.Y.
Ingold was stellar as the Mids swept George Mason and Loyola Maryland in their first outing of the 2012-13 campaign. The junior took first in the 100- and 200-yard freestyle events and swam the first leg of Navy’s winning 200 medley relay effort. Navy is the nine-time defending Patriot League men’s swimming and diving champion.
FEMALE SWIMMER OF THE WEEK
NAT BEALE, ARMY Fr., Baltimore, Md.
Beale made the most of her first collegiate meet, taking first in the 100 and 200 backs and the 200 IM as Army handed defeats to Boston College, Vermont and Rowan. Her 59.23 clocking in the 100 back is 10th all-time in Army history, while her 200 back time of 2:05.71 is fourth. She also swam the leadoff leg of the Black Knights’ victorious 200 medley relay.
MALE DIVER OF THE WEEK
BEN FREEDMAN, NAVY Jr., Kennewick, Wash.
Freedman’s best dive of the tri-meet against George Mason and Loyola Maryland was his effort off the three-meter board, where he scored 333.85 points to surpass the NCAA standard. He dove as an exhibition in that event with Navy having wrapped up the meet. Earlier on Freedman took first from the one-meter board with 277.55 points.
FEMALE DIVER OF THE WEEK
KATIE HETHERINGTON, BUCKNELL So., Houston, Texas
Hetherington started off her sophomore year as strongly as she did her rookie campaign. She swept the one- and three-meter diving competitions Sept. 29 as the Bison hosted UMBC in an unscored meet. Hetherington posted 231.45 points in the three-meter competition, and 227.03 points from the one-meter board. It’s the fifth time in her career in which she’s swept the boards.
BOBBY BALLANCE, AMERICAN Jr., Egg Harbor Township, N.J.
Ballance was part of a pair of first-place showings as American competed at the Potomac Relay Invitational Sept. 28. He participated in the Eagles’ winning 300 back and 400 medley relay performances.
CHRIS NGUYEN, ARMY Sr., Cheshire, Conn.
Nguyen began his senior season by sweeping the one- and three-meter boards as Army defeated Boston College and Rowan. He scored 317.65 points from the three-meter board, and tallied 273.75 points in the one-meter competition.
MIKE NICHOLSON, BUCKNELL Jr., Chappaqua, N.Y.
Nicholson won the 200 and 400 IM events and was the runner-up in the 100 IM as Bucknell competed in an unscored meet against UMBC Sept. 29. He blew away the field in the 400 IM, winning by 9.47 seconds.
KATELYN DESROSIERS, HOLY CROSS Sr., Gorham, Maine
Desrosiers placed fifth out of 40 swimmers as Holy Cross opened the season Saturday at the Assumption Pentathlon in Worcester, Mass.
DANIELLE REMINGER, NAVY Sr., Wheaton, Ill.
Reminger swept the 100 and 200 free events and anchored Navy’s victorious 200 medley relay team in the Mids’ two wins over George Mason and Loyola Maryland.