Last weekend was yet another successful event for the Geneseo Blue Wave as the men's team capped off an undefeated regular season with their 12th straight SUNYAC title and the women's team defended their own title for the second year in a row.
Head coach Paul Dotterweich said that despite his teams' success, he thinks they could've done better. "I think we were a little hit or miss to be honest … we definitely got the job done but we weren't necessarily on our 'A' game."
He attributed this not to a lack of effort on the part of his athletes, but to the level of competition they had faced all year. "I think we need to up the level of competition throughout the season, we haven't been challenged," he said. Dotterweich didn't fail to give his team credit, however: "As I reflected on it over the last couple of days, we really had some great performances and I'm pretty happy about it."
Junior Michelle Rodriguez led the team, winning five events overall, including two relays, and qualifying for the NCAA meet in three events. She was honored with the Female Swimmer of the Meet title for her efforts.
Rodriguez started off by winning the 500 freestyle on Thursday, with an automatic qualifying time of five minutes, 0.1 seconds. Just seconds behind her was freshman teammate Meghan Green, who reached the wall in 5:04.31. That time was good enough to earn her provisional qualification to the NCAA meet.
Junior Jennifer Anthone was another swimmer whom Dotterweich credited with a great weekend as she broke the school record in the 200 butterfly by 1.5 seconds. Anthone was also a member of the women's 400 freestyle relay team, which finished in first place with a time of 3:34.88.
During the meet, the men held off SUNY Cortland 829 points to 685, earning their 17th title in the last 21 years. Dotterweich said he was proud of the performance of sophomore Jeff Singer, stating, "He had an awesome meet; he dropped a lot of time." Singer placed second in the 400 individual medley in 4:13.68.
Fellow sophomore Ken Pink had a highlight reel performance for the men's squad over the three days of competition. Pink won the 200 IM with a time of 1:56.33, the 100 breaststroke in 58.72 and was the first to hit the wall in the 200 breaststroke in 2:08.46. Pink was also a member of the 200 medley relay team that placed second in a school record time of 1:34.9
Next week the Blue Wave goes to the Kenyon College Invitational in Kentucky. The meet will serve as an opportunity to shore up some NCAA provisional qualifying times as well as a chance for the athletes who didn't go to the conference championship to race in a high-profile meet. "It's a great atmosphere … and there will be some great competition for us to get excited about," Dotterweich said.
Dotterweich pointed to the men's 200 freestyle relay as well as several other events that would use the meet to improve their times. "They made the NCAA provisional cut but I don't know if it'll be fast enough to make the meet so we'll give it another try," he said. Another relay team he said that looks to improve is the women's 800 relay team.
After the Kenyon meet, the Blue Wave takes an extended break before heading to the NCAA championship meet. The meet takes place March 17-20 in Minneapolis, Minn., hosted by Beloit College and The College of Wooster.