Men’s swimming and diving places third, women take fourth in League Championship

Anslee Krouch, Senior Writer

The Bison men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams competed in the Patriot League Championship from Feb. 14-17 in Annapolis, Md. at Navy’s Lejeune Hall. The men’s team finished the weekend in third place overall, their best showing in five years, while the women took fourth.

Following the first day of competition, the men’s team sat in fourth place with 71 points, carried by strong finishes from relay teams. Chris Devlin ’18, Jacob Lubinski ’21, Chadd Cummings ’19, and Charlie McFarland ’19 placed third in the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:29.78, the second fastest time recorded in Bison history. The 800 freestyle relay team including Devlin, Sam Rutan ’18, Vince Filippini ’19 and Mitch Gavars ’21 also placed third.

Relays continued to be a strong suit for the Orange and Blue in the following days of competition, with Devlin, Lubinski, McFarland and Cummings placing third in the 400 medley relay, beating the school record by nearly two seconds.

Individual swimmers and divers excelled in the meet as well. Matt McGoey ’20 and McFarland qualified for “A” finals alongside Devlin, who took fourth in the 100 backstroke and Cummings, who placed sixth in the 100 breaststroke. For the divers, Garrett Sommer ’21 placed eighth in the one-meter dive with a score of 231.10.

On the final day, Devlin earned his sixth career individual gold medal and became the Patriot League’s first three-time champion in the 200-yard backstroke. Gavars also had a strong performance in the finals, placing fourth in the 1,650 freestyle, finishing the mile-length race in 15:29.64, the third-fastest time in Bison history for that event.

“We’re really happy with how this year went. This year definitely presented its fair share of challenges, and I couldn’t be prouder of how the team met and overcame every obstacle,” Devlin said. “Everyone stepped up when we needed them to, rallying around each other like we’ve had to do all year.”

The women’s team had an uphill battle at the start to the Championship as they finished the first day in last place, but were able to recover and come in fourth place overall.

The Bison women also saw strong performances from their relay teams. Abigail Rosenberg ’19, Lindsay Smalec ’19, Emily Gorham ’21 and Katherine O’Shea ’20 placed fourth in the 800 freestyle relay with a time of 7:22.03. The 400 medley relay team including Emma Hadley ’20, Leah Bloodgood ’18, Smalec and Rosenberg finished in second-place with a time of 3:41.48, setting a program record. Smalec, along with her fellow teammates Maggie Wyngowski ’21 and Julianna Foss ’18, went on to place in the top ten in the 200 IM “A” finals.

Day three of competition brought impressive individual showings. Wyngoski placed second in the 400 IM with a time of 4:17.80, breaking her own Bison record. Foss, also breaking her own record, took third in the 100 butterfly race with a time of 54.48.

On the final day, Hadley and Foss both had strong, silver-winning performances. Foss took second in the 200-yard butterfly, breaking her own program record from the 2016 Patriot League Championship, while Hadley placed second in the 200 backstroke. Julie Byrne ’19 also finished in fifth in the 200 backstroke.

Wyngowski kept her momentum from the previous days, taking fourth in the 200 breaststroke, breaking the program record by nearly a second. She became the second Bison to receive Rookie of the Meet honors since 2005.

The teams will be back on the road for the ECAC Championships on Feb. 23-25 in New Brunswick, N.J.

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