Blue Wave concerned with individual achievement, maintains high confidence for upcoming meets

The Geneseo Blue Wave is off to a strong start this year, with the men’s and women’s teams winning their last two meets. 

Both teams took down Albion College on Jan. 6 and defeated Case Western Reserve University on Saturday Jan. 20.  

For the men, senior swimmer Jeff Doser was a key factor in each of the meets, finishing first in six events. Sophomore swimmer Matt Mattera also won the 500-meter freestyle against Albion as well as the 500-meter and 1000-meter freestyles against Case Western Reserve. 

On the women’s side, junior swimmer Nancy Nasky excelled, claiming first in the 500-meter and 1000-meter freestyle in both meets. Freshman swimmer Lauren Siegel and junior swimmer Sydney Ng also shined, winning three events apiece over the two meets. 

“This past weekend was a great win for us. Case Western is a great team, so going to their home pool and getting a win was really big for team morale going into the championship season,” Doser said. “We always try to build off each win and keep momentum going through practice and the rest of the season.”

These victories bring the men and women to a five and six meet winning streak, respectively. A winning streak this great gives the team plenty of energy and should boost team morale. Although this is true to an extent, head coach Paul Dotterweich does not base the team’s success on wins and losses. 

“Honestly, in swimming and diving, wins and losses are not as important as in other sports,” Dotterweich said. “Here, it’s more about how we are performing, not so much the result. For us, in line with our success in wins and losses, is success in performance, which is great. Recently the team has surpassed my expectations. We are in a good place with lots of momentum moving forward.” 

The team feels confident about heading into their next meet against the University of Rochester on Friday Jan. 26 and Saturday Jan. 27. Doser recalled some strong swimmers from competing against Rochester in the Ithaca Invitational and looks forward to a competitive match.

The meet against Rochester intentionally spans two days. 

“The reason for the two-day meet is to prepare the athletes for the SUNYAC Championships,” Dotterweich said. “At SUNYACs, we’ll swim four days in a row. It’s time to prepare for multiple days of competition. In particular, the first-year athletes have to adjust, because this is likely something new to them.”

Dotterweich said the team does have some weak points, notably the 200-meter butterfly stroke on the women’s side and the backstroke and breaststroke for the men, which the athletes have been aware of throughout the season and look to improve. This week and the next are the pinnacle of training for the season, with two practices a day, every day. The team will work hard to fix mistakes and ready themselves for the championships.

Tending to the mental state of his players as well as helping them maintain their physical health is important to Dotterweich. He pays close attention to the spirit of the team. 

“I always say I push them to the edge of the cliff and have them look over the edge, but I hold onto their shirts and don’t let them fall,” Dotterweich said.