Swimming and diving prepares for Big East meet
Published: Monday, February 25, 2013
Updated: Monday, February 25, 2013 22:02
At the current moment, the UConn men’s swimming and diving team is warming up, getting used to the pool, and preparing for a grueling four days of tough competition at the Big East Championship in the Indiana University Natatorium in Indianapolis.
The meet begins on Wednesday, Feb. 27th with diving and relay events, and concludes on Sunday with a senior ceremony and several final events. The Huskies will compete against tough conference teams such as Louisville, Notre Dame, and Pittsburgh, as well as Georgetown, Cincinnati, Seton Hall, Villanova and Providence.
Notre Dame and Louisville are likely to be major players at the championship. Last year, the Irish took home first place and will without a doubt be looking to repeat this year and earn their sixth trophy since 2005. Swimmers from Notre Dame and Louisville, last year’s runner up, set 12 meet records in total at the 2012 competition. Louisville currently holds the No. 1 spot for most meet records in history.
Pittsburgh and West Virginia nabbed third and fourth place last year, followed by the Huskies in fifth place out of the 10 teams. The 2012 competition was sprinkled with success for the Huskies, as the men and women’s team combined to break 20 school records and post 92 personal bests. Notably, Kyungsoo Yoon set a school record when he came in fourth in the 50-yard freestyle finals with a time of 20.37 seconds. Sawyer Franz also netted two new school records in the 400-yard IM and the 1650-yard freestyle. Lachezar Shumkov also broke records with his 1:59.69 finish in the preliminary rounds of the 200-breastroke, while diver Grant Fecteau had an impressive fifth place finish in 1-meter diving.
The Huskies will look to improve on last year’s meet in Indianapolis.
“Every year you go in training as hard as you can with the goal of being as good as you can be, and that’s what we’ve done. Probably anywhere from third to sixth is realistic on where we should be,” Coach Bob Goldberg said.
According to Goldberg, the team has a “shot at it if [they] swim well enough.” The team has been swimming and diving well in practice, and most athletes seem to be getting over previous injuries and illnesses, making them “probably the best [they’ve] been for most of the year,” Goldberg said. He does not expect that the travel time or four-day long format of the meet will take a toll on any of his athletes, simply because they are all accustomed to championship level meets and have prepared sufficiently.
Starting tomorrow, the Huskies will use their try to hold their own against the powerhouses of the Big East. They will attempt to make an impact in the Day One events that include diving, the 200-yard medley relay and the 800-yard freestyle relay. “The whole season is invested in this one big weekend,” Goldberg said. The Huskies will attempt to validate that investment starting at noon tomorrow in Indiana.