The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps swim and dive team left the competition floundering in its wake as it racked up the wins during the first home meet of the season.
The Stags proved their dominance over Chapman University and California Lutheran University by outscoring them 243-42 and 223-70 respectively, while the Athenas defeated Chapman 192-103 and Cal Lutheran 209-78. Both the CMS men and women’s relay teams won the 200-yard freestyle relays as well as the 200-yard medley relays, with many team members also winning their individual races.
Lauren Rosenberger CM ‘18, who won the 500-yard freestyle, admired the success both she and her team achieved this past weekend.
“The team did really well,” she said. “We won almost every individual event, so that was most important. I was really happy with how my 500 had gone. I have been training distance a lot this year, so I was happy to get a good time in that and get the fastest time in SCIACs so far this year. I’m really excited for the team.”
Rosenberger accredits her win to her mental fortitude. By relaxing and not focusing on the race, she said, it’s easier to keep up the pace during the long and grueling races.
“I think if you’re not mentally there, they’re a lot tougher because the races take about five to 10 minutes, so if you’re never really in it then it sucks the entire time,” she said. “But I think it’s more fun to have a mentally challenging race because then it comes down to who wants it more rather than who’s physically stronger.”
Fellow sophomore Victor Ginelli CM ‘18 dominated the diving competition by sweeping both the 1-meter and 3-meter competitions. His win was followed by Patrick Quarberg CM ‘18, who usually switches off with Ginelli between first and second place.
“My biggest competitor honestly is my teammate, Patrick,” Ginelli said. “We definitely push each other. It sucks because he wasn’t really diving the best that I’ve seen him, so I was trying to pick him up. You have hard days in diving, like last meet was definitely hard, so coming to this one and doing consistently well put me in a good mood.”
Facing some time before their next meet, the swim and dive team is looking to push themselves to get better, both form-wise and skill-wise. The athletes are looking to build on the base they created this fall and getting ready to attack the next semester when the meets resume.
“No more competitions left, just a lot more training coming up soon, so we’re working on a lot more of the technical stuff,” Rosenberger said. “I’ve got a pretty good base now of being in shape, so now it’s working on getting starts and turns to be leaner and making sure all the technical stuff is really there.”
For their part, members of the diving team are using their time off to learn new dives to implement in upcoming meets. So far, Ginelli has been impressed with the effort and skill of his teammates as they perfect their diving form.
“The freshman, Maya, learned a new dive and it was unreal. I think she’s been diving for a couple of years, but she still needs time to get the bigger dives. But she just did a big dive today and it was better than any of the ones I’d ever done.”
On top of a first-year class that is growing stronger and stronger, both the swim and dive teams are expecting students currently studying abroad to return and become major contributors to the team next semester. While the team has proved successful so far, the juniors' return will be a helpful addition.
“We have a lot of girls studying abroad right now so we thought that this season was going to be kind of tough, but we brought in a really good freshman class, so I think spring will be really good,” Rosenberger said.
“I’m excited to see how everyone improves this year,” Ginelli said. “Coach Fran is getting better as a coach and I see a lot of people growing very fast. I’ve been diving for six years so I kind of know when people have a passion for it, and I think everyone on the team is really excited.”
The next official competition for CMS is the first week of December in Federal Way, Wash., but they will host their annual alumni meet on Saturday, Nov. 14 at Axelrood Pool.