The Geneseo Blue Wave men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams began their season against Division I Canisius College on Saturday Nov. 2, losing 144-99. Despite the loss, head coach Paul Dotterweich said the team had an encouraging performance.
“We won six of 13 events against a Division I school, so that’s an indication of how strong our upper-end swimmers are,” Dotterweich said. “Based on the performances, for where we are in the season, I was pretty pleased with what I saw.”
Junior Kenny Athans led the men’s side, as he outraced the competition in two individual events. He finished first in the 200 freestyle and the 100 freestyle with winning times of 1 minute, 47.1 seconds and 49.07 seconds, respectively. Sophomore Yonghoon Jun also impressed by receiving top honors in the 100 butterfly with a time of 52.26 seconds, as well as being a part of the winning 200 medley relay along with fellow sophomores Kristian Tialios, Justin Ongkingco and Jordan Gay.
Women’s diving also showed its talent in senior Emily Wanamaker, who won both diving events. She earned winning scores of 256.84 in the one-meter diving competition and 252.89 in the three-meter diving competition.
Dotterweich said he believes that his swimmers will keep improving. On the women’s side, most of his upper-end swimmers are facing injuries, though. Six-time All-American junior Haleigh Wixson is out for the year for a shoulder injury. Seven-time All-American junior Abby Max is nursing a fracture in her foot, so she will miss the beginning of the season. Senior Lauren Boyce is also dealing with an injury.
Dotterweich remains optimistic, however, and sees the potential the Blue Wave has with the current group of swimmers.
“On the men’s side, we’re in a pretty good place,” Dotterweich said. “We have to develop some of our younger swimmers. If we want to win the conference meet, our lower-end guys have to step up and perform on a higher level.
“On the women’s side, we’ll get [Max] and [Boyce] back. So once they’re back, that’ll be a significant shift in terms of the strength of our team,” he added.
Blue Wave will take on SUNY Fredonia on Saturday Nov. 9. Dotterweich said he’s hopeful the younger swimmers will use the experience against Canisius to face the Division III opponent.
“It’s their first college meet, so we’ll give them some time to step up, and I know that they’ll progress as the season goes on,” he said.
Dotterweich said that he is confident in his team and, despite growing pains, they will be able to pull off a successful season – maybe even a conference title.