Swim and dive: Minutemen and Minutewomen sweep meet against Bryant

Minutemen win first meet of the season

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Nina Walat / Daily Collegian (2019)

By Marco Lopez , Collegian Staff

After a one-month absence from the pool the Massachusetts swim and dive teams returned to action in dominant fashion, sweeping its meet against Bryant University. The Minutemen (1-3) earned their first win of the season, 170-130, over the Bulldogs (1-2). The Minutewomen picked up their third straight win, a 182-118 victory over the Bulldogs (2-1).

“It was very satisfying,” head coach Sean Clark said of the win. “We knew Bryant was going to be ready for us for their senior day, we had to be at the top of our game to take care of them.”

The meet on Saturday was a rare split meet for UMass, where the swimmers went to Bryant’s Chace Pool to compete while the divers competed at UMass’ Rogers Pool in Amherst because Bryant’s pool didn’t have a diving board.

The divers started at 11 a.m. and helped the Minutemen and Minutewomen get off to strong starts in the meet. Led by Andrew Bell, Sean O’Dell, and Tommy Cotner, UMass swept the one-meter board. The Minutemen went 1-2-4 on the three meter board as well. The Minutewomen picked up double wins in the one meter board and three meter board courtesy of Emma Petrovich.

The swimmers picked up where the divers left off back at the pool in Rhode Island. Anna Kwon and Maggie Desmond led the way for the Minutewomen with Desmond winning the 100 breast stroke. The women also dominated the 200 IM, going 1-2-3 in the event.

On the men’s side, UMass won its first meet of the year. The two signature wins of the meet for the Minutemen were the 200 IM where UMass finished one and two and the breaststroke where UMass went 1-2-3.

“This is a great way to start 2023,” Clark said of the UMass win. “We have 17 men on the roster now so everybody is essential, everybody’s got a role. And everyone is ready to step up when they can. We really feel like we’re starting to gel as we’re heading into the last month of the season”

The dominant wins for the Minutemen and Minutewomen reflected the hard work that both teams have put in over the past month. During their one-month absence from competition, both teams took part in a winter training trip at the Sailfish complex in Stuart, Florida.

“Eight days of training, a bunch of long course swimming, that’s the Olympic size, the Olympic distance. We had great weather and the team was really invested in making a good use of our time, we trained to our full limit, it was pretty fun,” Clark said of the trip.

“We had a sprint group, a stroke group, and a distance group. And each group just pushed themselves to the absolute limit, and still kept up good morale.”

The teams will now prepare for the Tate Ramsden Invitational, which will take place from Jan. 20 to Jan. 21 at Dartmouth College. Competition will start at 5 p.m. on Jan. 20 and 10 a.m. on Jan. 21.

Including the upcoming Tate Ramsden Invitational, just two meets remain before the Atlantic-10 championships in February. UMass will start to ramp up and get themselves ready with rigorous training sessions over the next few weeks.

“We’ll keep it interesting,” Clark said. “We’re not just going to follow the black line and do boring training. We’ll have plenty of group things, and plenty of challenging exhibitions and unique sets. And I think we’re settling down and looking forward to it.”

“We have two dual meets left. I think that gives us enough good competition sprinkled in before the big show in the middle of February.”

Marco Lopez can be reached at [email protected]