Senior Day awaits Swimming & Diving
Seton Hall Athletics
The Seton Hall swimming program will honor its seniors from the men and women’s teams at a 1 p.m. meet against Marist in at 1 p.m. Saturday in South Orange.
Men’s honors include Zach DeLillo, Richard Lessard, James Logan and Ben Mitchell. Women’s honors include Sarah Dougherty, Jane Ehret and Megan Mostoller.
Logan and Mitchell are defending Big East champs, while Lessard has qualified in three of his four years in South Orange. DeLillo, a transfer from Rider, is looking to finish his Pirate career on a high note.
Ehret, who broke the school record for the 400-yard medley at the 2011 conference championship, Mostoller and Dougherty have been Big East qualifiers throughout their careers.
Head coach Ron Farina said that he’s proud of all the decorated group has accomplished.
Just two competitions are left on the slate before the 2015 Big East Championships in February at Ithica, N.Y., and the NCAA Championships in March.
Both the men and women enter Saturday’s meet fresh off of a blowout win against Iona. The women won the first six events en route to 14 first-place finishes in 16 events, 167-117. The men pummeled the Gaels and swept all 16 events, 190-96.
The story of the weekend came from the Pirates’ freshman class, as Kylene Ronayne was named the Big East Women’s Swimming and Diving Athlete of the Week.
It’s been a strong year for the program as a whole, which features a combined 32 underclassmen. According to Farina, the seniors have been crucial to the young teams’ success.
“We have a nice mix,” Farina said. “Little bit of old and new. Everyone really came together. Both the men and women had a great underclass. The freshmen did a great job of filling holes, even exceeding our expectations.”
Farina said that the team’s annual trip to Puerto Rico helped bring the veterans and young swimmers from both sides closer.
“We come back five or six days before classes start,” Farina said of the week-long trip. “It’s a real nice environment, great team bonding experience. All they do is eat, sleep and swim.”
Mitchell, one of Seton Hall’s most decorated divers in school history, had another stellar season to cap off a shining career.
“Ben is probably one of the best athletes we’ve had,” Farina said. “He’s so dedicated. We’ve seen a lot of growth (throughout his four years). This year, the hardest part is repeating. But he’s in a really good position to do it.”
The Pirates’ season, and Mitchell’s run, is not over yet. With both the men’s and women’s teams looking to continue competing deep into the next two months, Farina is excited to see what they can do.
One day after honoring the seniors, Seton Hall will travel to Storrs, Conn., for a match-up with the Huskies. After that, all that’s left are the Big East Championships from February 18-21 and the NCAA Championships from March 26-28 (men) and March 19-21 (women).
Tom Duffy can be reached at Thomas.firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter @TJDHoops.