Rowan swimming and diving stays hot, prepares for WPI Gompei Invitational

The hottest team at Rowan University this winter just may be the one that spends the majority of its time in the water.

The men’s swimming and diving team is 5-0 following their most recent meet against Pace University on Nov. 19. The men’s team pulled out a 140-76 victory over the Setters.

The women’s team followed suit, stretching their winning streak to three with a 144-93 win over Pace. After starting the season 0-2, the team now sits at 3-2.

“We have a lot of freshmen this year so I think in the beginning nerves might have gotten the best of some people,” sophomore Miranda Coughlan said. “Now that everyone’s settling in to college swimming, I think that we’re doing well.”

“They raced well and they competed well,” head coach Brad Bowser said. “It was good to have the break for the holiday and we’ll see what we can do this upcoming weekend.

The 200 medley relay and 200 freestyle relay for both teams won first place.

For the men’s side, five athletes took home first place in individual events. Among them were seniors Paul Long, Mike Simunek and Jesse Novak. Junior Eric Feuerstein also took first in his event.

Senior diver John Morris and sophomore diver Sean Piacente came in first and second respectively on the three-meter boards.

On the opposite end, the women also had individual success with five athletes touching the wall first. Those swimmers included freshmen Emily LaBenski, Bailey Howarth, Carlee Timmins and Nikki Broome. LaBenski and Howarth took first in two events each. Coughlan finished first in the 200 freestyle.

Freshman Corinne Finkbinder finished third in the one and three-meter boards.

“Pace went really well since last year we lost to them,” Coughlan said. “Going into it we just tried to keep it positive. We ended up winning by a lot so that was a big confidence boost.”

The next time the brown and gold get into the pool will be at the WPI Gompei Invitational in Worcester, Massachusetts. The event spans Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

“It’s sort of like our invite championship meet for the season,” Bowser said. “It’s multiple teams that will be there. They have to place to get a second swim later at night. This is a mid-season that that we look at to try and qualify for NCAA’s and the Met conference team.”

Bowser emphasized the importance of the meet for the men’s side, saying that there are some people that score and some that do not.

Coughlan as well as the other swimmers know how important the meets are. She said that the team is preparing differently for this weekend.

“Instead of having normal, hard practices we’re getting a little more rest,” Coughlan said. “We just talked to coach and he wants us to get season-best times to help prepare for the end of the year competitions and Mets.”

The WPI meet is one that contains preliminary races in addition to final races, something that Bowser said is common in championship format meets.

With all of the events going on this weekend, Coughlan is happy that his team had off last weekend for the Thanksgiving holiday.

“I definitely think that will help us this weekend,” Coughlan said. “A lot of people got to catch up on some sleep and really rest instead of sitting in classrooms all day focusing on school. At this point that’s very important.”

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