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Women's swimming and diving to face Penn St.

By Erica Brancato
On November 8, 2012

The UConn women's swimming and diving team has had a strange week. As hurricane Sandy blew through the Northeast, it prevented the team from practicing and competing in their two-day event in New Jersey.
The Big East Quad Meet was cancelled altogether, due to conditions relating to the hurricane. Despite this obstacle, the team is back and ready for their next meet against Penn State on Nov. 10.
"The team was not too bad in the way of time off training, but for a few days you could tell there were other forces at play in the way of being all over the place and discombobulated," diving head coach John Bransfield said. " I'm glad we don't deal with hurricanes in our championships."
The Big East Quad Meet could have helped the team in the long run.
"For our divers, we really look forward to out first semester meet with Rutgers," Bransfield said. "They are traditionally strong, well-coached and I know they like to get some shots in on us when they have a chance. They are usually good contests."
Unlike other sports, both swimming and diving are more of a competition within the athlete, rather than a competition with the other team. Rather than looking at how to shut down the best athlete on the opposing team, competitors challenge themselves to be the best that they can be. The Big East Quad Meet was a precursor for the Big East Championships in February. Missing this meet will pose a challenge for the swimmers and divers, but it's a challenge they are ready to take on.
"Frankly, I do not consider our opponents, the people we compete against on the other side of the pool deck. It's great to meet them a few times throughout the year to have a sense of that part our environment," Bransfield said. "But how we shape for the Conference Championships comes down more to how well we compete within ourselves. As we progress, we try to bring our own challenges up front and learn to step up in the face any situation. We still have plenty of competitive situations ahead to hone those skills ... They are slowly but surely, as a whole team, demonstrating the fundamentals we worked on for six weeks."
This Saturday, UConn will travel to Philadelphia to compete in a meet against the University of Pennsylvania.  

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