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January 3, 2018

UMass women’s swimming and diving finishes third in Dartmouth Invitational, men take second

Collegian File Photo

Collegian File Photo

The Massachusetts women’s swimming and diving team continued its impressive performance throughout the weekend by finishing third out of six teams, falling behind host Dartmouth and Northeastern in the Dartmouth Invitational.

Despite the third-place finish, the Minutewomen are using these meets as preparation for the most important part of their season: the Atlantic 10 championships.

“The thing with the Dartmouth Invitational is it allowed everyone to swim,” UMass coach Bob Newcomb said. “[After] all the events, I was very pleased with the overall team performance on the weekend.”
Freshman Meriza Werenski and sophomore Jocelyn Yuen led the charge for the women’s side, as the two underclassmen represented the team’s only four first-place finishes over the weekend. Werenski’s performance accounted for three of those first-place finishes, with Yuen taking second in her other event. Yuen’s performances over the season has caught Newcomb’s eye many times.

“Jocelyn Yuen is swimming extremely well right now,” Newcomb said. “She won the 200 butterfly [event], and I think she’s swimming very well at this point.”

Newcomb continued on to admire sophomore Rebecca Quirie’s “high-level performances,” eventually saying that the two sophomores “really stick out in my mind.”

Those two underclassmen have made a difference on the team together, but the entire underclassmen group as a whole has made a significant impact on the team, according to Newcomb.

“I think our underclassmen have really come in and tried to help change the face of the program,” he said. “[They’re] really geared toward doing things at the top level of the Atlantic 10 and beyond. We’re really pleased with the class that has come in and with the whole way they have changed and molded the face of this team.”
With the A-10 championships coming up, the importance of high performances from the swimmers is at its peak. It is was the swimmers train all season for. However, when asked if the team was ready for the championships, Newcomb responded at first with a chuckle, and began to explain himself.

“At this point, they need to rest,” he said. “As far as the preparation and the racing, that’s done. They just have to let their body’s rest and let the work they have put in come back to the surface going into the Atlantic 10 [championships].”

Minutemen take second

With the women’s team finishing in third, the UMass men’s swimming and diving team found higher success, placing second out of six schools in the Dartmouth Invitational.
While most of the events in these swimming meets call for individual performances, the Minutemen found their success elsewhere, excelling more in team relays than as individuals. In four events, the UMass relay teams combined for seven top five finishes, with three of those seven coming in second place.

The Minutemen also excelled in their individual events. Senior Chris Inglis and sophomore Josh Koppel both took first place in the 200-yard freestyle and one-meter diving, respectively, as the team as a whole combined for 10 total top-five finishes in 34 events. The individual efforts were led by Alessandro Bomprezzi, Hao Luong and Michael Glenn, with all of them making top five appearances.

Taking a glance at the diving section of the men’s team, Koppel has performed well all season long. Through nine meets this season, the sophomore has taken first place in at least nine events, with Sunday being the latest victory. He looks to continue his mad rush for first place on Sunday versus Fordham.

Tom Mulherin can be reached at tmulheri@umass.edu.

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