Last Wednesday the Georgetown swimming and diving team was in the familiar confines of the McCarthy Natatorium for its first dual meet of the season. But the home pool advantage was not enough for the Hoyas to capture a victory.

The Delaware Blue Hens won both the men and women’s sides of the competition, with the Delaware women winning 141.5 to 101.5 and the Georgetown men falling to Delaware 139 to 102.

Delaware is known as a strong team, so Georgetown did well to keep it close. In a dual meet, point totals do not always reflect the quality of the overall performance. That was the case on Wednesday, as the Hoyas had strong individual performances from both the men and the women.

Junior Katie Amaro had impressive swims for Georgetown as she won both the 200-yard freestyle (1:57.16) and the 500-yard freestyle (5:11.53) in convincing fashion. Her first victory in the 200-yard free was by over a length, and her closest competition in the 500-yard finished more than four seconds behind her.

“She continues to be a force on our team,” Head Coach Bethany Bower said. “I’m excited about where she’s headed.”

Bower was also pleased with the performance of the freshmen women on the team. Caitlin Colling won the 50-yard freestyle, beating out an impressive field. On the other end of the distance spectrum, freshman Kelcey Poulson had an impressive swim in the 1,000-yard free. She and junior captain Cori Raffaelli finished fourth and third respectively, but both only two seconds behind the leader, a close margin in a long race.

“I don’t think the points really reflect how close the whole meet was,” Bower said, “and this is certainly a case where the final outcome did not reflect the swim.”

The diving aspect of the meet was also highlighted by a freshman. Kelcey Moore won both the one-meter and the three-meter diving events for Georgetown.

In swimming for the men, senior Michael Bayer won the 50-yard freestyle by less than a tenth of a second in a time of 22.27. Fellow senior Peter Nguyen won the men’s 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:05.24. In the 200-yard individual medley yet another senior, captain Kevin Walsh, won in 2:05.41. These top performers underscore the importance of the senior men on this year’s team.

“I have a team that is going to have a very much missed men’s senior class,” Bower said.

One swimmer who the Hoyas will use to help fill out the team is junior Heath Walden, and he is already preparing.

“Heath put a lot of work in over the summer. He swam consistently, and he’s really going to have a good season because of it,” Bower said.

Walden won the 100-yard backstroke on Wednesday in a time of 56.26 seconds.

Despite the fact that the Hoyas did not come away with a win, Bower said she was very happy with the way the season started. She is looking for the men to repeat as Northeast Conference Champions this year and for the women to join them at the podium. Bower acknowledges that the conference is getting faster and Georgetown lacks the depth that some of the larger schools have, but she said she still feels that she has the right team to get the job done.

The coach pointed to the mental aspect of racing as one area she would like to see her team improve.

“We need to focus on finishing our races a bit better. This is a long season – one of the longest in collegiate sports – and it’s important to stay mentally focused,” Bower said.

The Hoyas will attempt to even their record this coming weekend as they travel to Fairfield University for a meet against the Stags and the Friars of Providence College, who were recently added to the competition. The meet will begin at 1 p.m. on Saturday in Fairfield, Conn.

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