Dec. 11, 2013
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. – Last weekend’s schedule was one final burst of activity before the normal December layoff for most. With final exams here and Christmas on the horizon, teams take most of the month to rest and prepare for the six-week pre-championship push that begins in early January.
That’s not to say there isn’t anything going on. One of the most anticipated dual meets of the season is set for Thursday when Army and Navy do battle in Annapolis, Md., on Patriot League Network. It’s the first time the rivals will meet at Lejeune Hall since 2009. Army hosted in 2011, with Philadelphia serving as the site in 2010 and ’12.
Army is looking to snap long slides against the Mids. The Navy women have won 24 straight in the series, while the Navy men are unbeaten in the last 22 meetings.
Patriot League Notebook
BISON OVERTAKE RAIDERS IN LEAGUE MATCHUP
One of the highlights of last weekend’s meet schedule was a dual between League foes Bucknell and Colgate in Hamilton, N.Y. The Bison continued their strong season with a sweep on Saturday, with the men taking a 220-57 victory and the women a 176-121 win. Senior Ben Seketa paced the men with a sweep of the 100 and 200 breast events, while sophomore Emma Levendoski captured both backstrokes.
BU SPLITS IN RETURN TO POOL
LOYOLA TAKES TWO OF THREE
Competing for the first time in two weeks (and its first dual in a month), Boston University settled for a split with the women posting a 168-132 win over Rutgers and the men falling 186-114 to Yale. Sophomore Mika Spencer led the Terriers with three individual wins, taking the 200 and 500 free races and the 200 IM. Senior diver Chelsea Glincman was the runner-up on both boards to give the Terriers key points. On the men’s side, junior Connor Stuewe impressed again with a win in the 100 back and a runner-up showing in the 200 back.
The Greyhounds had another successful showing in their third quad meet of the season, with both the men and women sweeping Iona and St. Peter’s and losing to Marist. Junior Ruslan Kopunek’s season-best times in the 50 and 100 free races led him to gold, while senior Michael Brown captured his fourth win from the one-meter board. Sophomore Kaitlin Richter broke the school record in the 200 fly with a 2:06.87 clocking, more than a second better than the old mark of 2:08.33 set in 2011. Senior Elle Mixa posted a pair of top-two finishes from the boards. The Hounds return to the pool in the New Year when they visit Lehigh in mid-January.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
American sophomore Paris Wood took second in the 100 back and Bobby Ballance sixth in the 200 back as the Eagles competed at the ECAC Winter Championships last weekend on Long Island … American is slated to head to Spain on Dec. 28 for the XV Ciudad de San Sebastian … Following Thursday’s meet with Navy, Army is scheduled to send competitors to the U.S. Diving Nationals in Austin, Texas, beginning Dec. 17 … The Black Knights will also compete at the Copa Coqui in Puerto Rico just after the New Year … The schedules of Boston University, Bucknell, Colgate, Holy Cross, Lafayette, Lehigh and Loyola are all dark until January.
BACK TO LEJEUNE
Bucknell and Navy continue to trade off hosting duties for the Patriot League Swimming and Diving Championships, with the Mids taking the honors in 2014. Lejeune Hall will serve as the site of the newly-expanded 10-team championship from Wednesday-Saturday, Feb. 19-22 in Annapolis, Md.
MORE TEAMS, ANOTHER DAY
The Patriot League's expansion to 10 schools with the additions of Boston University and Loyola Maryland means that the swimming and diving championships will grow also. What has traditionally been a three-day meet spanning Thursday to Saturday will expand to four starting with the 2014 edition hosted in Annapolis, Md. While the exact order of events has yet to be officially announced, the duration of the championship increases by one day with festivities beginning on Wednesday.
NAVY TOPS PRESEASON POLLS
Coming off its second straight sweep at the Patriot League Swimming and Diving championships, Navy was named the favorite in the 2013 preseason poll of the head coaches and sports information directors who could not cast ballots for their own teams.
Both Mid teams topped their respective voting with 160 points and 16 first-place votes. In the men's poll, League newcomer Boston University took second with 141 points and three first-place votes, while 2013 championship runner-up Army was third with 137 points and the last remaining first-place ballot.
Bucknell came in fourth with 110 points, with Lehigh close behind with 100 points to take fifth. The League's second newcomer, Loyola Maryland, finished sixth in the men's voting with 68 points, while American (seventh, 60 points), Colgate (eighth, 57), Lafayette (ninth, 49) and Holy Cross (10th, 18) rounded out the men's balloting.
Just as in the men's poll, the Terriers claimed second in the women's balloting with 140 points and four first-place votes. Third place went to Bucknell with 127 points, while Colgate claimed fourth with 113. Army eclipsed the century mark in points to claim fifth in the poll with 101. The rest of the poll featured Lehigh (sixth, 77 points), Loyola (seventh, 76), Lafayette (eighth, 49), American (ninth, 39) and Holy Cross (10th, 18).
Patriot League Swimming and Diving Weekly Awards
MALE SWIMMER OF THE WEEK
RUSLAN KOPUNEK, LOYOLA MARYLAND Jr., Rehoboth Beach, Del.
Kopunek posted season-best times in a pair of individual race victories as the Greyhounds went 2-1 at their own H2ounds Invitational over the weekend that featured Iona, St. Peter's and Marist. He captured his fourth victory of the season in the 100 free with 46.58, and added his third win in the 50 free with a clocking of 20.81, both season bests for the junior. Kopunek was also part of two victorious relay squads, one runner-up relay effort (which lost by just four hundredths of a second) and had a sixth-place time in the 100 fly in 52.98.
FEMALE SWIMMER OF THE WEEK
EMMA LEVENDOSKI, BUCKNELL So., Mandeville, La.
Levendoski continued her dominance of the backstrokes, sweeping the 100- and 200-yard races for the sixth time in six tries this season as the Bison posted a 176-121 victory at League rival Colgate on Saturday. She won the 100 back in 95 hundredths of a second in 57.61, and took gold in the 200 in 2:02.80, eclipsing the field by 3.14 ticks. Levendoski also swam leadoff of Bucknell's winning 200 medley relay with a 27.30 split of an eventual winning time of 1:49.37. Her fourth swim of the meet was in the 400 free relay, which counted as an exhibition swim as Bucknell had already clinched the meet.
MALE DIVER OF THE WEEK
MICHAEL BROWN, LOYOLA MARYLAND Sr., Timonium, Md.
Brown won the one-meter dive for the fourth time this season with a score of 268.95 at Loyola's own H2ounds Invite against Marist, Iona and St. Peter's. It was his seventh overall victory during his senior season. Brown also added a fifth-place showing from the three-meter board with 233 points.
FEMALE DIVER OF THE WEEK
CHELSEA GLINCMAN, BOSTON UNIVERSITY Sr., North Brunswick, N.J.
Glincman had a strong showing off the boards for the Terriers with two second-place showings in their 186-132 victory over visiting Rutgers on Saturday. The senior was consistent with 269.10 points off the three-meter board, and 260.40 points off the one-meter apparatus. She was BU's leader off both boards.
BOBBY BALLANCE, AMERICAN Sr., Egg Harbor Township, N.J.
Took fourth in the 100 back (51.50) and sixth in the 200 back (1:54.59) at the ECAC Winter Championships over the weekend.
CONNOR STUEWE, BOSTON UNIVERSITY Jr., Monterey, Calif.
Recorded one of BU's three victories in Saturday's meet loss to Yale. Took the 100 back in 50.62 while adding a runner-up swim in the 200 back (1:50.73).
TARA BOYLE, BUCKNELL Jr., Winnetka, Ill.
Scored a career-high 261 points off the three-meter board in taking second in Saturday's 176-121 win at Colgate. Took first from the one-meter board with 245.70 points.
BEN SEKETA, BUCKNELL Sr., Camillus, N.Y.
Swept the breast races with times of 57.74 and 2:08.76 in the 100 and 200 distances, respectively, in Bucknell's 220-57 win at Colgate on Saturday.
KAITLIN RICHTER, LOYOLA MARYLAND So., Cherry Hill, N.J.
Broke the school record in the 200 fly with her first win in that race this season in a time of 2:06.87, eclipsing the old mark by over one second. Also won the 100 fly in 57.79 as the Greyhounds went 2-1 over the weekend against St. Peter's, Iona and Marist.