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

UMass swim and dive sets multiple school records at Atlantic 10 Championships

Andrew Bell wins men’s most outstanding male diver
Nina Walat

The Massachusetts swim and dive teams faced tough competition at the Atlantic 10 Championships. The Minutemen (1-3, 0-1 A-10) ranked second overall behind George Washington University with a team score of 455.5. The Minutewomen (2-5, 0-1 A-10) finished seventh overall with a team score of 296. The Minutemen’s second overall finish at the A-10 championships was the team’s best finish since winning the conference title in 2016.

“I am really impressed with the way that our team was prepared and the way they battled through the whole three and a half days,” head coach Sean Clark said.

Diver Andrew Bell came home as the A-10 Swim and Dive Champion in both the men’s one-meter and three-meter events with scores of 381.37 and 406.95 respectively. Bell was also awarded the Most Outstanding Male Diver of the A-10. Shreeya Sinha finished the women’s three-meter event in third, with a final score of 294.95.

“We needed points from every corner in our quest to move up the team standings. Absolutely, [Bell’s] double win was essential in getting us up to second. Well earned, he broke the conference record in the three-meter board in prelims so he continues to astound,” Clark said.

“On the women’s side we were battling for position and [Sinha] kept us in the meet with her really amazing three-meter performance as well.”

Many school records were broken over the course of the championship meet. Sam Haddad was the A-10 bronze medalist in the men’s 400 individual medley and set a new school record with a time of 3:49.90. Haddad also broke the men’s 200 individual medley record with a time of 1:47.60. Sammy Quigg set two school records for the men’s 50 freestyle with a final time of 20.17 and the men’s 100 free with a 43.54.

Eric Eastham set a new school record and won the silver medal in the men’s 200 backstroke with a final time of 1:44.96. Freddie Borg became the new school record holder in the men’s 100 breaststroke, finishing with a time of 54.64. Quigg, Eastham, Aidan Shepston and Emerson Kiefer set a school record in the men’s 400 freestyle relay with a time of 2:57.12.

“I couldn’t look away, I had to pay attention because I didn’t know who was going to step up next to spark the team,” Clark said of the multiple school records. “And it just kept happening, we were hopeful to see some great performances. [Eastham’s] 200 backstroke was just a true gem of a swim. Megan Mitchell broke the school record in the 100 back and the 200 back all four years at this meet. Just another outstanding effort.”

As mentioned by Clark, Mitchell set the record in the women’s 100 backstroke, finishing with a 54.44 time. Mitchell now also holds the women’s 200 backstroke school record, finishing third with a time of 1:55.83. Beren Cakiroglu, Caroline Mahoney, Maggie Desmond and Mitchell set the women’s 200 freestyle relay school record with a 1:32.00 final time. Lindsay Burbage, Summer Pierce, Mitchell and Desmond came in third in the 200-medley relay and set a new school record with a time of 1:40.06.

Both the men’s and women’s teams set new school records in the 400-medley relay event. Mitchell, Desmond, Pierce and Mahoney recorded a new school record with a time of 3:42.33. The men’s relay team of Beau Bengston, Grant Beebe, Borg and Quigg set the new school record with a time of 3:15.71.

The conclusion of the A-10 championships marks the end of the season for the UMass swimming and diving teams, and for graduating seniors, the end of their collegiate swimming careers. Both teams now look ahead to next season after a successful campaign that included many awards and records for both the Minutemen and Minutewomen.

“I’ll tell you, we’ll enjoy a little bit of rest, a little bit of reflection on what an amazing group of characters we put together here,” Clark said.

“We’re losing some astounding senior leadership on both the men’s and women’s side and we’re going to really appreciate what they were able to do. At the same time we’ve got to hit the recruiting trail pretty hard to keep UMass rolling. I think we’ve got a nice contribution from our underclassmen and they’re excited to step in as needed.”

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

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