Both the men’s and women’s swimming & diving teams came away with second-place finishes at the Liberty League Championships this past weekend, held at the University of Rochester in Rochester, N.Y. Although the host school took the title for both sides, it was the first time in six years that RPI’s women’s team has finished ahead of local rival Union College, who finished third in the tournament.
The women’s team was led by senior diver Kelsey Manley and freshman Tina Belletete. Manley earned her second-straight Diver of the Year honor after taking first-place in the 1-meter board with a score of 365.85, followed with a second-place finish in the 3-meter event, scoring 377.30 points. Belletete, who specializes in freestyle and backstroke, came home with Female Rookie of the Year honors after earning three victories in the meet. In addition, she set a Liberty League record and a new school record in the 200-backstroke with a time of 2:09.88. Freshman Mairead Lyons finished second in the 200-butterfly with a time of 2:14.26, and classmate Christina Provenza placed third in the same event with a time of 2:19.74.
On the men’s team, freshman Ben LeRose also earned a Liberty League Rookie of the Year honor after winning five of the seven events he swam. Highlights of LeRose’s performance included a first-place finish in the 200-fly with a time of 2:00.71 and aiding the 400-freestyle relay team with a time of 3:15.05. Also, members of the four-man team were senior Kevin Ehrlich, sophomore Julian Schott, and sophomore Luke Flanagan. Schott, Flanagan, and LeRose anchored a strong relay team that came away with wins in three of four relay events on the meet. In addition, Schott earned first-place honors in the 200-breaststroke with a time of 2:14.35.
The two teams will take a short break, returning to the pool January 15 when they will host a dual meet against local rival the Union College Dutchmen and Dutchwomen at the Robison Pool.