Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Swim and dive: UMass falls in regular season finale to Fordham

Andrew Bell breaks school record in 3-meter dive
Nina Walat
Daily Collegian (2019)

The Massachusetts swim and dive teams wrapped up its regular season with a pair of losses against Fordham University on Saturday in Bronx, New York. The Minutemen (1-3, 0-1 Atlantic 10) lost to the Rams (7-1, 1-1 A-10), 160-136. The Minutewomen (2-5, 0-1 A-10) fell to the Rams (8-0, 2-0 A-10), 182.5-117.5. The meet marked the first time UMass has visited Fordham in five years, with its first trip to the Bronx since Feb. 2019.

“We swam as well as we’ve ever swum at Fordham. It’s been a while since we’ve been down here but I was really impressed with our willingness to compete,” head coach Sean Clark said. “This is kind of a weird time of the season as we’re coming down in training. So to travel to a new facility for this group and to compete as hard as we did, we really showed up strong.”

The Minutemen kicked off the individual events with a one-two finish in the men’s 1000-yard freestyle. Freshman Jude Boukarroum came in first place with a time of 9:51.06, which secured a new personal best time. Wilson Dubois followed Boukarroum in second place with a 9:53.05 finish.

“On the men’s side it was interesting the way that we stacked up several one-two finishes. I think that started off right away in the 1000s with [Boukarroum] as a freshman really making a statement and then right behind him was [Dubois]. It really set the tone for the whole meet,” Clark said.

Freshman Aydin Erkan also earned a first-place finish for UMass in the men’s 200-yard butterfly with a final time of 1:53.03. Erkan continued a strong freshman season in the fly events, previously earning a gold at the Terrier Invitational and Justin Jennings Invitational in the 200 fly.

“I think [Boukarroum and Erkan] really started to adjust to the college training cycle. The physical challenges take some time, they [got to] grow into being able to handle all the dryland activities,” Clark said. “So it’s nice to see that we’ve set things up so they can be successful toward the end.”

Overall, the Minutemen finished with six first place finishes on Saturday. Freddie Borg and Jack Artis finished first and second in the men’s 100-yard breaststroke. Eric Eastham took home the gold in the men’s 200-yard backstroke with a 1:52.54 finals time. In diving, Andrew Bell won both the 1-meter and 3-meter diving events. In the 3-meter events, Bell broke his own school record of 397.28 with a 403.73 score against Fordham.

“I think probably the best result [Saturday] was [Borg’s] 100 breaststroke, again leading the one-two finish. Toward the end of his season and toward the end of his career he’s really rounding into shape,” Clark said.

The Minutewomen took home four gold medals on Saturday. Anna Kwon took home a first-place win in the women’s 200-yard free with a time of 1:55.46. In the 50-yard freestyle, senior Maggie Desmond touched first with a time of 24.14.

In the 200-yard backstroke, Megan Mitchell and Lauren Stott placed second and third, with times of 2:03.52 and 2:07.25 respectively. Mitchell also placed third in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 57.37, following senior Bri Williams, who finished just milliseconds ahead with a final time of 57.27, picking up the silver.

In the diving events for the Minutewomen, Shreeya Sinha took first place in the 1-meter board with a 268.50 score and second place in the 3-meter board with a 262.80 score. Sinha’s score on the 1-meter board was the 10th highest score all-time in UMass swim and dive history.

Up next, UMass takes the pool for the final time this season in the A-10 championships, starting Feb. 21 at the Hampton Aquaplex in Virginia.

“This is the favorite part of the season for the swimmers especially because we do less and less and let bodies recover and bring up the speed. It’s also the hardest part for the coaches, nerves are all over the place. Everyone’s trying to set themselves up for a truly ultimate performance,” Clark said.

Marco Lopez can be reached at [email protected].

Devin Lippman can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @devinlippman.

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