In 23 of the 32 events held on Saturday at their opening meet of the season against Rochester Institute of Technology, the Rensselaer men’s and women’s swimming and diving team’s were first to hit the wall, with repeat victories from both the men and women. The two teams engineered leads of 180–118 and 182–113 respectively at the away dual meet.
For the women, multiple-event winners included sophomore Danielle Sauve in the 50 free and 200 free, her sister, sophomore Jessica Sauve, in the 500 free and 1000 free, junior Siena Sara in the 100 and 200 breaststrokes, and sophomore Shanny Lin in the 100 and 200 butterflies. Lin’s time in the 200 butterfly was record-setting for the pool, at a speedy 2:05.6.
The road to the first meet has been grueling for the women. Junior co-captain Annika Lindstrom had been meeting with the other two women’s team co-captains, junior Anna Drechsler and senior Maddie Miller, from the beginning of school until practices formally began last month. Since then, coaches have been implementing strenuous workouts for the swimmers. Lindstrom looked back gratefully on the training since September, and is predicting fast times based on the talent she has witnessed in her peers.
“We’ve barely had a day without two practices and have racked up yardages in the pool,” said Lindstrom. “We’ve had a few minor injuries and such out of the pool, but other than that we’ve been in full force. Everyone is putting in the time and effort needed to become the team we want to be and place top three at states for both women’s and men’s.”
“The next meet we have is Ithaca which notoriously is our hardest meet. We went undefeated last season except for Ithaca, but I think with the team we have this year we have the chance to beat them. It’s going to be tough, though. We need to be on top of our game and have nearly perfect races. We’re a stronger team than we were last year and they graduated a lot of good seniors, so now it’s our shot. This coming week and next week we will be practicing harder than we have all season to prep for this meet.”
For the men’s team, Freshman Mavin Liu was on top, surpassing all competition in three events that evening: the 100 fly, 200 fly, and 200 individual medley. In the medley, Liu had a three second lead on the next swimmer to hit the wall. The three swimmers who completed the race after him were all within 0.2 seconds of each other.
In the 500 and 1000 freestyle races, freshman Dan Hendricks swam fastest with 4:59.1 and 10:24.8 respectively. Both diving events, the one meter and the three meter, was freshman Alex Chused.
Named co-captains for the men’s team this season are senior David Connor, senior David Gardiner, and senior AJ Schick. Connor swims breaststroke, Gardiner backstroke, and Shick backstroke and freestyle.
As Lindstrom mentioned, Rensselaer’s next competition will be Ithaca College at home on Saturday, October 31, at 2 pm.