By Anthony Garcia
The College’s men’s and women’s swim teams hosted Rowan University in a highly anticipated matchup on Senior Day, Saturday, Jan. 25, which decided the winners of the NJAC title. The men’s hot start was not enough, as they lost 161-139. The women continued to show heart, but fell 180-114.
Before the event started, the swimmers showed their appreciation for five male seniors, Derek Kneisel, David Madigan, Eli O’Connor, Zachary Volm and Harrison Yi, and four female seniors, Samantha Askin, Anna Kisker, Annie Menninger and Kazia Moore.
The seating area in the College’s aquatic center was filled with fans for both teams, leaving many contestants standing.
“Normally there’s not that many people here,” said Jack Cassidy, a senior economics student who went to the meet in support of his friends. “I’m really surprised.”
The men’s team was pumped up before the meet and began chanting in hopes of beating Rowan for the first time since 2016.
The meet started with the women in the 200 medley relay; the A-relay team took second with a time of 1.50.41.
The men’s team took first and third in the 200 medley relay, which was a neck-and-neck race until the end. The A-relay men clocked in at 1.32.94, winning by less than a second. The B-relay team also took third with a time of 1.37.06, exciting the crowd.
In the free 1000-yard races, senior Annie Menninger placed third with a time of 11.10.10. The men took second and third place in the event, with sophomore Mathias Altman-Kurosaki timing in at 9.57.28 and freshman Conrad Hoody behind him with a time of 10.01.79.
Next in the women’s 200-yard free, freshman free Cameron Carrazza came in at 2.01.63 and took third. As for the men, senior Harrison Yi placed first, finishing tenths of a second faster than Dominick Sheppard of Rowan and uplifting the crowd.
“I’ve never seen him swim like that, that was so close,” Cassidy said.
For the first time in the meet, the women’s team then grabbed first place, with sophomore Zoe Chan finishing the 200-yard fly in 2.06.86. This was followed by a dominating capture of first place for the men by junior Griff Morgan, who was two seconds in front of the field with a time of 1.52.75.
In the 50-yard free events, freshman Shannon Hesse added to a surge for the women, taking first place with a time of 24.60.
In the 18th event, Yi added to his successful day with a second place time of 47.88. Sophomore Meg Healey grabbed first in the 200-yard backstroke for the women. Meanwhile, junior Andrew Thompson took second as freshman Sean Rave placed third in the men’s 200-back. Thompson later went on to take first in the 100-yard fly.
Menniger, Morgan and Chan completed their day in the water with a second-place finish for Menninger in the women’s 200-breast, two more first place finishes for Morgan in the men’s 500-free and 200-IM and two more first-place finishes for Chan in the 100-fly and 200-IM.
Each team’s last effort in the 400-free relay was not enough, but both teams’ A-relay placed second.
The team ended the meet with a chant of “Good job Rowan, see you at METS.”
The Lions will travel to New Brunswick on Feb. 21 for the three-day MET Conference Championships after finishing up at William Paterson on Feb. 1.