Nov. 23, 2011
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. -- A busy four-day stretch came to an end Sunday as all eight League teams faced some kind of competition over that span, including some from other League foes.
Patriot League Swimming and Diving Release - 11.23.11
Navy picked up its first NCAA B-cut times of the season over the weekend at the Nike Cup. Senior Mac Anthony took second in the 200 free with a B-cut time of 1:37.48 and was part of a pair of Navy relay teams that eclipsed B-cut marks. Laura Gorinski did the same in one of her premier events. She clocked a 2:13.82 in the 200 breaststroke, placing her fourth at the Nike Cup but giving her the first B-cut mark of the year. The Mids were strong across the board, taking second in the men's competition and fifth on the women's side. Kellie Darmody had a banner weekend at the Nike Cup, breaking school records in the 100 and 200 backs with times of 56.00 and 1:59.46, respectively.
Lafayette and Lehigh engaged in their annual dual meet on the customary evening before their football rivalry plays out. Just as was the case on the football field Saturday, Lehigh got the best of Lafayette in both the men's and women's meets. The Mountain Hawks won 223-71 for their 21st straight victory on the men's side, while the Lehigh women ran their streak in the rivalry to four with a 169-131 victory. The Lehigh men won 14 of 16 events, paced by senior Kevin Shoemaker, who captured three individual victories and was part of a winning 400 medley relay. The Mountain Hawks also set a pool record in the 200 medley relay.
On the women's side, freshman Alissa Leung continued piling up the victories as she added three individual events to her season ledger. She won the 100 back, 200 back and 200 IM and swam the first leg of Lehigh's victorious 400 medley relay. She just missed out on school records in her 100 and 200 back performances.
Bucknell was impressive in sweeping its own invitational over the weekend, which included participation by Colgate. Sophomore Mike Nicholson added his name to the list of League student-athletes with B-cuts this season after clocking a 3:53.73 in the 400 IM. His win in that event was one of three individual victories during the three-day event, and he picked up a fourth first-place showing as part of a victorious 400 medley relay effort. Nicholson further cemented his name in Bucknell history when he broke a 24-year school record in the 200 fly by 1.73 seconds (1:48.57). Freshman Katie Hetherington garnered the second Female Diver of the Week honor after a pair of top-two finishes at the invitational, including a school record from the three-meter board.
The Thanksgiving holiday will provide some respite for the eight League teams for approximately a week, but another full slate is scheduled for several days beginning Dec. 1. Colgate and Lehigh head off to the USA Nationals in Atlanta, Ga., for three days, while Army sends representatives to the Big Al Diving Invitational at Princeton. The Black Knights will also see action at the Zippy Invitational hosted by Akron beginning Dec. 2, while Holy Cross heads off to the Harold Anderson Invitational the same day.
There are three dual meets scheduled for the first weekend in December. After both the men and women took sixth at the George Mason Invitational last weekend, American will visit D.C.-rival Howard Dec. 3 at 1 p.m. Bucknell will also be on the road visiting La Salle at 1 p.m., while the Lehigh men will host NJIT at 1 p.m.
One of the highlights of the early schedule is about two weeks away, with the annual Army-Navy meet set for Dec. 8 at 6 p.m. at West Point, N.Y.
Patriot League Weekly Awards
MALE SWIMMER OF THE WEEK
MAC ANTHONY, NAVY Sr., Allentown, Pa.
Anthony posted his first NCAA B-cut times of the season as Navy took second out of eight schools last week during three days at the Nike Cup in Chapel Hill, N.C. He finished second in the 200-yard freestyle, narrowly missing the B-cut standard with his 1:38.75 clocking in the trials before eclipsing it when he touched the wall in 1:37.48 in the finals. Anthony was also instrumental in helping a pair of Navy relay foursomes post B times. He aided the Mids in collecting a time of 3:00.03 in the 400 free relay and clocking a 6:40.01 in the 800 free relay.
FEMALE SWIMMER OF THE WEEK
LAURA GORINSKI, NAVY Jr., Greensburg, Pa.
Gorinski joined Anthony in posting an NCAA B-cut time when she clocked a 2:13.82 in the 200-yard breaststroke at the Nike Cup to finish fourth in the event. She took third in the event's preliminary swim with a 2:14.77 and improved upon that time in the finals. She also swam the 200 IM and took fifth with a time of 2:02.15, the third fastest in Navy history, and sixth in the 400 IM in 4:22.28, which is tied for the second fastest in Academy annals. Gorinski helped the Mids posted a fourth-place finish in the 200 medley relay and place sixth in the 400 medley relay.
MALE DIVER OF THE WEEK
CHRIS NGUYEN, ARMY Jr., Cheshire, Conn.
Nguyen was busy last week, competing at the Galbraith Diving Invitational at Rutgers and participating in the Black Knights' dual meet at Columbia. His best showings came from the three-meter board, when he scored 322.15 to win the event at Rutgers and adding another first-place showing with 317.70 points against the Lions. Nguyen took second in the one-meter dive at Columbia with 292.12 points and finished fourth from the board with 252.00 points at the Galbraith.
FEMALE DIVER OF THE WEEK
KATIE HETHERINGTON, BUCKNELL Fr., Houston, Texas
Hetherington qualified for NCAA Zones later this season when she won the three-meter dive at the Bucknell Invitational with a score of 285.05, eclipsing the cut by 5.05 points. That tally broke the Bison record by 24.57 points set three years ago by Allison FitzPatrick. Hetherington scored her best point total of the season in the one-meter competition with 257.45 to take second. Through four collegiate meets, Hetherington now owns school records in both the one- and three-meter dives.
MIKE NICHOLSON, BUCKNELL So., Chappaqua, N.Y.
Nicholson clocked an NCAA B-cut time of 3:53.73 to win the 400 IM at the Bucknell Invitational, one of his three individual victories and four overall wins during the three-day meet in Lewisburg, Pa.
ALISSA LEUNG, LEHIGH Fr., Garden City, N.Y.
Leung won the 100 and 200 backs along with the 200 IM and was part of a first-place 400 medley relay showing as Lehigh defeated rival Lafayette for the fourth straight year. Her 58.08 clocking in the 100 back was .01 seconds shy of a school record.
ARIELLE BLUMENTHAL, LAFAYETTE Jr., Deerfield, Ill.
Blumenthal swept the one- and three-meter dives in the dual vs. Lehigh, taking first in the one-meter with 211.87 points and winning the three-meter with 228.45 points.
CONNOR STYLES, LEHIGH Sr., Chappaqua, N.Y.
Styles swept the one- and three-meter dives against Lafayette, posting 289.71 points in the one-meter and 309.00 from the three-meter board.
Patriot League Notebook
NAVY'S B-CUT DE JA VOUS
For the second year in a row, Navy's Mac Anthony and Laura Gorinski captured her first NCAA B-cut times of the season at the Nike Cup in Chapel Hill, N.C. Just as he had a year ago, Anthony eclipsed the B-cut in the 200-yard freestyle, clocking a time of 1:37.48 to finish second in the event. One of Gorinski's strongest events is the 200 breast, and she surpassed the standard with a time of 2:13.82, which placed her fourth in the finals. Last season, Gorinski broke the Patriot League and Navy records in that event at the Nike Cup before surpassing those marks again two weeks later. Anthony and Gorinski were named the Patriot League Male and Female Swimmers of the Week, respectively, on Monday. Navy's men's 200 free and 200 medley relays also posted B-cuts, along with Mark Meyer in the 200 fly.
MAKE ROOM FOR HETHERINGTON
A pair of men's divers had already surpassed marks to qualify for NCAA Zones in March, and Bucknell freshman Katie Hetherington joined them over the weekend. The rookie from Houston, Texas, had already posted several impressive performances and set the school record from the one-meter board this season when she added the three-meter record in competition at the Bucknell Invitational last weekend. Hetherington scored 285.05 points in the three-meter event, surpassing the qualifying total by 5.05 points and breaking the school's three-year-old record. With just four collegiate meets under her belt, Hetherington now owns both school records. She joins Army's Chris Nguyen and Lehigh's Connor Styles as Zones qualifiers this season.
RIVALRIES PLAYING OUT BEFORE CHAMPIONSHIP
The Patriot League houses two of the most passionate rivalries in intercollegiate athletics in Army-Navy and Lafayette-Lehigh. The latter played out Friday night as it traditionally does on the evening before the annual football tilt between the two schools. Lehigh swept both the men's and women's duals, taking the men's competition for the 21st straight year and the women's for the fourth time in a row. A pair of freshmen enjoyed their first forays into the rivalry, as Lehigh's Alissa Leung posted three individual wins while Lafayette's Megan Kaveney won the 50 free and was part of a winning 200 free relay for the Leopards. Army-Navy will have their annual Star Meet Dec. 8 at West Point.
Top times for the student-athletes in the Patriot League are available by going to the Patriot League Swimming and Diving homepage at http://www.patriotleague.org/sports/c-swim/patr-c-swim-body.html. There fans can find the Top Times link in the sidebar on the right side of the page underneath the standings. That will bring up CollegeSwimming.com. To find the League's top times in all swimming events, make sure to change the conference setting to "PL."
NAVY AIMS FOR ANOTHER TROPHY
The Navy men extended their record run to eight consecutive Patriot League Championships last season when they captured the trophy at Bucknell. While the Mids have already secured the mark for most consecutive titles, they can focus on tying rival Army for the most men's crowns in League history. The Black Knights dominated in the early years of the League, capturing nine championships in a 10-year span from 1992-2001, with 1999 the sole exception when Lehigh won the hardware. If the preseason poll is any indication, Navy will pull even with Army in most men's championships at this season's meet in Annapolis, Md. The men collected the maximum 98 points and 14 first-place votes, with Army (second, 83 points) and Bucknell (third, 73) splitting the remaining two. Lehigh was picked fourth with 59 points, followed by Colgate (56), Lafayette (33), American (32) and Holy Cross (14).
THREE OUT OF FOUR AND LOOKING FOR MORE
Colgate has won three of the last four League titles on the women's side and led wire to wire at last year's championship meet with first-year head coach Fernando Canales at the helm. The Raiders will look for their fourth crown when the championships return to Navy's Lejeune Hall Feb. 16-18. Colgate finished first in the preseason poll with 95 points and 13 first-place votes, but the host Mids were right behind with 87 points and the last three first-place ballots. It was the Mids who snapped Colgate's two-year championship run by winning the trophy in 2010, when the League meet was last held in Annapolis, Md. Bucknell took third in the women's preseason voting with 74 points, while Army was fourth with 60. Rounding out the poll was Lehigh in fifth with 46 points, American in sixth with 45, followed by Lafayette (seventh, 27) and Holy Cross (eighth, 14).