The Ithaca Invitational ended with the Bombers taking 10-combined first-place finishes against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, SUNY Geneseo and the University of Rochester in the last meet before the Upper New York State Collegiate Swimming Association Swimming and Diving Championship. There was no team score for the event.
Victoria Blakeslee, women’s swimming and diving graduate assistant coach, said this meet is the warm up to States.
“This is the start of our championship season,” Blakeslee said. “This meet gets everybody pumped up and ready to race and be fast going into championships.”
The South Hill Squad was sharp and focused from the start of the meet. In the first event, the team of freshman Nara Norgil, sophomores Heidi Mickunas and Kelsey Jepsen, and junior Jennifer Francisco took first place in the 200-yard medley relay with a time of 1:58.97.
Mickunas would later team up with juniors Miranda Wingfield and Sara Yagan, and freshman Maia Rumsey to win the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:48.14. Jepsen also did well individually, finishing first in the 100-yard butterfly and the 100-yard individual medley with times of 1:00.29 and 1:04.91 respectively.
On the men’s side, senior Jon Yoskin took first place in the 100-yard breaststroke, finishing with a time of 1:02.99, and junior Eddie Mostert finished first in the 200-yard breaststroke with a time of 2:24.79. Freshman Zach Meunier took second place in the 100-yard freestyle, finishing in 49.85.
Paul Dotterweich, Geneseo men’s swimming head coach, said the Ithaca Invitational is a great environment to be in right before States.
“It’s an opportunity to swim in a championship style pool,” Dotterweich said. “Ithaca’s has some great swimmers and it makes for good competition.”
As for diving, sophomore Anna Belson and freshman Scott Hillen both won the 1-meter and 3-meter events, totaling in four first place wins. Belson said she feels sharp heading into states.
“All the repetitions in practice are finally paying off,” Belson said. “There’s always room for improvement, but I think we’re in a good place heading into states.”
The Blue and Gold will compete in the UNYSCSA championships meet beginning at 10 a.m. Feb. 17 at the Athletics and Events Center Aquatics Pavilion. The meet will feature the Bombers as well as Alfred University, Bard College, Clarkson University, Hartwick College, Nazareth College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Rochester Institute of Technology, Sarah Lawrence College, St. Lawrence University, Skidmore College, Stevens Institute of Technology, Union College, Utica College, Vassar College, and Hobart and William Smith Colleges