SWIMMING AND DIVING | Hoyas Await Tough Tigers
Published: Thursday, October 18, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 18, 2012 23:10
After falling to Delaware in their last outing, the Georgetown swimming and diving teams look to rebound in a meet this Saturday at Towson.
Although the Hoyas lost to the Tigers last year — 156-135 on the men’s side and 171-128 for the women — Head Coach Jamie Holder expects a highly contested meet, particularly for Georgetown’s men.
“The meet for the guys is really going to be a close meet. Towson’s girls are very strong,” Holder said. “Obviously, we’re going to put up our best lineup and see what we can do, but the guys’ meet could be pretty close, and it’s going to go back and forth.”
In devising his strategy to secure victory, Holder has focused on freestyle races because Towson is particularly strong in the butterfly.
“The freestyle events … we’ve got to win those,” Holder said. “They’ve got a 100 [butterflier] that right now we haven’t gone faster than, and even in the 1000 and the 200 and the 100, they have guys that are faster than we’ve currently gone.”
Freshman Austin Evenson leads the Blue and Gray in the long-distance freestyle events, as he placed first in both the 1000-yard and 500-yard freestyle against Delaware with times of 9:44.90 and 4:46.86, respectively. However, Towson may be even better in the 1000-yard race, with its top swimmer posting a 9:34.53 in the team’s last meet.
Towson also has an edge in the 200- and 100-yard freestyle events. Georgetown junior Matthew Mandel finished in 48.51 in the 100 and freshman Cal Rohde posted a 1:44.67 in the 200 against Delaware, while Towson’s top freestylers finished in 47.47 and 1:42.52, respectively, the last time they hit the water.
Although the Hoyas are up against a tough rival, Holder expects to see competitive races across the meet.
“I do think our guys can race and conceivably beat some of their top guys — definitely the 100 fly is going to be a race that they probably will win — but hopefully we can come up with some other wins in the freestyle events to combat that,” Holder said.
In that 100 yard butterfly, Towson freshman Matt McKenney posted an incredible 50.26 in the team’s last meet. As Holder said, Georgetown’s butterflier, senior Victor Lopez-Cantera, will be hard pressed to challenge McKenney after finishing in 52.21 against Delaware.
The women’s side will face tougher competition, battling a Towson women’s team that routed William & Mary, 197-95, last week. The women have their best chance for victory in the 200-yard individual medley, the only event they placed more than one swimmer in the top three at Delaware.
In the Delaware meet, junior Lauren Opatrny and sophomore Casey Bandman finished first and third, respectively, with times of 2:11.58 and 2:14.44. However, Towson has two women who broke 2:10.00 against William & Mary.
Freshman Erin Timochenko will look for a repeat in the 100-yard butterfly, which she won at the Delaware in 58.93. However, since two Towson swimmers finished faster than that last week, Timochenko and the rest of the Hoyas will be fighting an uphill battle Saturday.
Despite those likely difficulties, Georgetown has continued its pattern of improvement during Holder’s three-year tenure and looks to do even better at Towson.
“Our distance events are stronger than they were last year, and I think our relays have also improved,” Holder said. “Just overall, we’re a stronger team. We still have a few holes to fill, but we’re definitely going to be better than last year.”