Swim team looking sharp heading into Loyola meet
Seton Hall’s swimming and diving team will look to continue their early season success this Saturday when the men and women travel to Baltimore for the Loyola Quad Meet.
Both teams are coming off victories at Rider on Thursday where they improved to 2-0 on the young season.
Coach Ron Farnia is happy with his teams’ recent effort.
“It’s really great,” he said. “We knew that going into Rider it was going to be a tough week. They beat us pretty good last year, actually the last two years. On both sides it was a really good team win for us and I think it gave our young freshmen a lot of confidence.”
The women beat out the Rider Broncs 178-111, boasting the best performance in 14 of the meet’s 16 events. The Pirates have now placed first in 30 out of 32 events this season. They swept Montclair State University in their opener on Oct. 8.
Among others, several newcomers stood out for the women. Freshmen Kat Carson, Kylene Ronayne and Sydney Simpson each went home with two individual wins.
Carson’s wins came in the sprint freestyle competitions where she recorded a time of 24.88 in the 50-yard race and a 55.15 in the 100-yard. Ronayne, participating in the 200-yard freestyle, came in first with a time of 1:56.55. She also took first place in the 200-yard backstroke, just beating out teammate Melody Bush with a 2:08.33 mark. Simpson, doing the 100-fly, would come in just over a minute, again good enough for first. She also took the top spot with a 2:28.39 time in the 200-breaststroke.
At the end of the day, a total of nine different Pirates won an event for the women.
The men won as well, ousting Rider 160-138. Seven members of the Hall combined for eight individual wins.
Just as it was with the women, several freshman stole the show. The trio of Sean Sali, Matt Zebrowski and Zohar Suslovich each won at least one event for the men.
Suslovich of Holon, Israel, led the way with two first-place finishes in his second collegiate meet. He ended the day by leading in the 200-IM with a time of 1:59.50. Prior to that he had won the 200-backstroke, coming in at 1:56.50 in an event that saw teammates Michael Mattera and Keith Carlino come in second and third, respectively.
Farina has been happy with all of his freshmen, even if having so many kids poses some lineup challenges.
“Our team is the largest we’ve ever been,” the 15-year coaching veteran said. “They (the freshmen) are constantly swimming for their spot in the lineup and inevitably on a Big East Championship team. It keeps everybody sharp and focused. Hopefully in the long run it will be a benefit to us.”
The trip to Baltimore will be Seton Hall’s first quad meet of the season and Farina wants to make sure that all of his swimmers keep that mentality.
“We’ve had some success early on and I think it’s important with a young team to keep them focused,” Farina said. “I think it’s important to use these meets as different markers to see progression and see improvement.”
The Pirates take on Loyola on Saturday. Drexel and Lafayette will also be participating. The meet is set to begin at 1 p.m.
Gary Phillips can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @ GPhillips2727.