This past Friday, the men and women’s swimming and diving teams dominated against Sewanee: The University of the South (Tenn.), not losing a single event as the women won 133-91 and the men won 124-77. The next day, both Emory teams fell to Georgia Tech, the women 152.5-90.5 and the men 192-45.
On Friday, the team celebrated the 12 graduating senior Eagles in a pre-meet ceremony.
“The whole team has bonded so much over the years, and we [juniors] have spent a long time with seniors,” junior Claire Lui said. “It was bittersweet to see, nice to see them with their families but sad because they’re graduating. But, the whole team got together and gave them a nice send-off.”
On the women’s side against Sewanee, senior Ellie Thompson led the team picking up two wins, first in the 200-meter IM (2:09.47) and then in the 100-meter Back (57.60). Lui recorded the one NCAA ‘B’ Cut time for Emory with her first-place time of 51.99 in the 100-meter Free. Additional first place finishers included senior Elizabeth Aronoff in the 100-meter Breast (1:05.80,) juniors Marissa Bergh in the 200-meter Free (1:55.52), and Annelise Kowalsky in the 100-meter Fly (58.51), sophomore Isabella Issa in the 1,000-meter Free (10:47.22) and freshmen Hannah Baratz in the 50-meter Free (24.53) and Ava Salmi in the 500-meter Free (5:06.94).
First place finishes from the men’s side included senior Matt Wu in the 200-meter IM (1:57.74), juniors Christian Baker in the 100-meter Fly (50.19) and Mitchell Cooper in the 100-meter Back (51.32), sophomores Alex Hardwick in the 200-meter Free (1:43.56) and Chandler Lichtefeld in the 100-meter Breast (59.40) and freshmen Matt Varraveto in the 1,000-meter Free (9:55.46), Zachary Chen in the 50-meter Free (21.72), Trey Kolleck in the 100-meter Free (47.64) and Jonathan Morse in the 500-meter Free (4:45.48).
Hardwick mentioned the meet was a fun competition because of Senior Day and the big win. “It was more of a technical meet, as well,” he said. “We were able to work on a lot of things we’ve been doing in practice.”
On Saturday, Emory traveled to Georgia Tech for their last competition of the dual meet portion of this season.
Sophomores Rebecca Upton and Julia Wawer paced the meet with their first-place finishes. Upton won the 1,000-meter Free (10:29.04) while Wawer won the 500-meter Free (5:09.35). Upton also placed second in the 500-meter Free (5:12.88). Wawer joined the 400-meter relay team along with Bergh, Liu and freshman Fiona Muir to win the event (3:29.79). Sophomore diver Mara Rosenstock competed in two diving events, placing second in the 1-meter (299.40) and third in the 3-meter (261.15).
At Georgia Tech, the men were led by junior Christian Baker, who placed second in both the 200-meter Free (1:42.11) and the 500-meter Free (4:37.75). Senior John Galvin placed fourth in the 200-meter Fly (1:57.07). Sophomore Oliver Smith finished second in the 50-meter Free (20.55) and finished third in the 100-meter Free (47.20). Cooper finished second in the 400-meter IM (4:08.19).
Hardwick said that the competitive Georgia Tech meet set up the team for the end of the year’s tougher races. “Georgia Tech beat us, but I think we swam over what their expectations for us were,” he said.
The Eagles are now preparing for the University Athletic Association (UAA) Championships on Feb. 17-20 hosted at the University of Rochester (NY). Both teams will be seeking their 18th consecutive UAA win, the women looking for their 24th overall and the men for 18th overall. The same weekend, however, many Emory swimmers will be back at Sewanee for their last chance to improve their times before the NCAA Division III Championships held in March.
Lui is heading to the UAA’s, but said it doesn’t really matter which meet swimmers go to. “The overall goal is to swim fast and have fun, which can happen anywhere, whether it be at Sewanee of the UAA’s.”
Harwick added that the teams are looking to continue the tradition they’ve had at the UAA’s, and use the competition as a test run for NCAA’s. “But we’re just taking it one meet at a time,” he said.