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Women's swimming and diving to face Big Green

By Erica Brancato
On January 31, 2013

The UConn women's swimming and diving team had a successful and memorable last home meet. They not only defeated Seton Hall but paid tribute to the seniors as well. "Senior Day is certainly a worthy recognition for our seniors," diving coach John Bransfield said. "As a coach, I think of my senior athletes as seniors every day of the year, in practice, on trips, in contests, and most importantly in follow-ups to all the events.  Personally, I feel the emotional part when they climb the ladder after the announcer reads that final dive. From that moment to when they come out of the water is the non-ordinary clip."
Although senior day marks the end of a journey for most of the graduating athletes, the team looked at it with optimism.
"Senior day is always a fun day for the seniors. The underclassmen really go all out in decorating the locker room and pool deck," swimmer Mary DeMarrais said. "It's a bittersweet day but instead of dwelling on the saddness, we try to focus on how proud we are to be part of such a great team."
Along with the celebration for the seniors there was also a tribute to the Sandy Hook Victims before the meet started. "I think the highlight of the meet was not only was it senior day but an honor to all the Sandy Hook victims. There was a tribute before the meet started when Brendan cook, Sean Cook's younger brother, played amazing grace on the bagpipes in honor of the victims," Mary deMarrais said. "The team also wore green caps with the victims initials on them and there were green paw prints around the pool with all 26 names on them. I think for me personally this was the highlight of the meet because it was just a way for us to honor and pay tribute to such a horrific tragedy."
The Huskies' first win of the second semester showed that the long break between meets did not impact them at all.
"I think our biggest strength was that everyone was really excited to come back and race again," Mary DeMarrais said. "I don't think that there was any major weakness in the meet. I'm sure individually everyone found something they could have improved for next weekend but everyone stepped up and did what they had to do this weekend. I was satisfied a great deal by our performances on Sunday," coach Bransfield said. "Some changes were visible in areas we have worked the past four months, and with a refined focus will pay come Championships."
As for their upcoming meets, the team has the utmost confidence they will succeed. UConn will travel to Hanover, N.H. for their meet this Saturday against Dartmouth.
"My expectations against Dartmouth is that we display the skills we have worked since the beginning of the season to shape for this time of the year," Bransfield said. 


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