Blue Wave remains strong competitor despite obstacles

The Geneseo Blue Wave continues full steam ahead with both the men’s and women’s teams defeating the University of Rochester in a two-day meet on Friday Jan. 25 and Saturday Jan. 26. The men outscored the Yellow Jackets 259-82 and the women won 240-107. 

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Blue Wave to send athletes to nationals

Seven athletes from Geneseo men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams have qualified to compete at the NCAA Division III National Championships.

Junior diver Samuel Randall and sophomore swimmer Nancy Nasky will both be returning to nationals after being the only two athletes to represent Geneseo in 2016. Randall was the 2016 national champion in the 1-meter dive and has now qualified for nationals in all three of his collegiate seasons. 

Nasky was a 17th-place finisher in the 1,650-yard freestyle in 2016. Only the top 16 finishers earn scoring for their team, so this year will give Nasky a chance to accomplish that feat.

“I’m sure that her goal is to place in the top 16 this year and score some points for us,” head coach Paul Dotterweich said.

The men’s 200-yard freestyle relay team qualified for nationals with a conference record first place finish at the SUNYAC Championships. The team consists of junior swimmer Jeff Doser, junior swimmer Derek Secord, junior swimmer Scott Guyton and sophomore swimmer Matt Modelewski. The same four swimmers also set a conference record in the 400-yard freestyle relay and have competed together as a team throughout the season.

“We try and keep them together as much as we can,” Dotterweich said, “just so that they’re familiar with each other for the take-offs and exchanges.”

On the women’s side, senior diver Claudia Kolakowski will join Nasky at nationals after qualifying with her performance at the SUNYAC Championships. This will be her first national appearance and she will be the only senior from Geneseo to compete there.

Freshman diver Samantha Reichman was one athlete that barely missed out on national qualification, according to Dotterweich. Although seven is an impressive number of athletes to be able to send to nationals, there were more athletes like Reichman who just missed out, according to Dotterweich. He added that he believes they will have the potential to qualify in the years to come.

“We’ve got a few who were on the edge, but it’ll take a little hard work to get there,” he said. “Our men’s 200 medley relay wasn’t far off, and we’ll have three of those four guys returning next year, so hopefully we can bring in a fast back-stroker to lead it off.”

The NCAA Division III National Championships will take place almost a full month after the SUNYAC Championships, where the swimmers last competed. The divers had the chance to compete a week later at the Regional Diving Championships, but the long wait to compete again is something the athletes need to battle with.

“The first week they’re excited because they’re going and then the second and third weeks can be a little more challenging when the rest of the team doesn’t have to come to practice and they’re still coming to practice,” Dotterweich said. “But I think the excitement of going to the national championships gets them through.”

The wait also serves as a chance to spend a lot of time fine-tuning the athletes’ training based on what they will compete in.

“Going into the conference meet, we were preparing them to swim in multiple events,” Dotterweich said. “Jeff [Doser], for example, trained more for middle distance all year, but now we can just focus on a 50-meter sprint for him.”

Overall, the team experienced a relatively smooth season, according to Dotterweich. They got through the season with few injuries, but Dotterweich credits depth for being able to overcome the injuries that they did have.

“That’s part of having a deep team,” Dotterweich said. “If we have those injuries and a couple people can’t get there, we’ve got people waiting in line to fill their spot and get the job done.”

The NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving National Championships will be held in Shenandoah, Texas, from March 15-18.

Blue Wave tapers training as SUNYACs approach

Both the men and women swam into first place during the Geneseo Invitational on Jan. 28. The team looks to continue their success in their upcoming meets, as they are sending athletes to the Ithaca Invitational and to SUNYACs. (Keith Walters/Campus Photographer)

The Geneseo men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams are set to begin their respective postseasons for February with high expectations. Blue Wave will compete at the SUNYAC Championships at Erie Community College from Wednesday Feb. 15-18.

For both teams, conference titles are nothing out of the ordinary. A win for the women would mark their 10th consecutive SUNYAC Championship. It would be the fourth in a row for the men, who have won the title in 18 of the past 20 seasons. 

In a sport that can place a lot of focus on individual success, the program has been able to cement itself as a perennial winner at the team level. Head coach Paul Dotterweich said his focus is always on team success.

“Aside from our academic goals, our number one priority is winning a championship and it takes 20 guys to get that done,” he said. “It comes back to our team culture and where our priorities are. We’re team first above everything else.”

Both teams will head into championship season ranked in the top 25 in Division III by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America. After commanding performances at the Geneseo Invitational on Jan. 28, the men were slotted at No. 20 and the women at No. 21. It is the first time that both teams hold a spot in the rankings at the same time this season.

“That was cool to see,” Dotterweich said. “On a year-to-year basis, that’s always one of our goals: to be in the top 25 in the country. We’re happy to be in there and it’s nice to get some recognition across the country.”

For the athletes who will compete at the SUNYACs, preparation includes a decrease in training volume, according to Dotterweich. They will undergo a two or three-week “taper,” in which practices become significantly easier to give the athletes the energy they need. Mixed with the strength they have built up throughout the season, the Knights should hit their peak performance at the most important time.

For some, the challenge of training hard all season can take its toll and it can become a task within itself to stay healthy for the moment they have been preparing for since day one.

“We train our whole season for one weekend and it can be very unforgiving,” Dotterweich said. “We have a few guys right now who are battling illness and we’re a week out. You get the flu now and your season can be shot.”

The team’s maturity and work ethic, however, continues to shine. Dotterweich has gone the entire season without an assistant coach on the swimming side.

“The team has really stepped up,” he said. “I’ve had some upper class athletes that have been helping me out at practices and have done a good job of being a little more mature and focused, understanding that getting the job done is a responsibility that is a little greater on them this year.”

Beyond the SUNYAC Championships, the goal is to send as many athletes as possible to the NCAA Division III National Championships in Shenandoah, Texas, from March 15-18. 

Geneseo sent two athletes to nationals last year, sophomore swimmer Nancy Nasky and junior diver Samuel Randall, who won the National Championship in the one-meter dive. Dotterweich and diving coach Shawn Austin hope to send a few more athletes this year.

“Shawn [Austin] is hoping to take another diver or two. On the swimming side, I feel like we have a couple relays that have the potential and maybe a few other individuals,” he said.

Only 17 swimmers and three divers can compete for each side at the SUNYAC Championships, but the athletes who were left off of the squad will have a last chance to compete this season at the Ithaca Invitational on Saturday Feb. 11.

Blue Wave takes first place at home invitational

The Geneseo Blue Wave swim team gets hyped up before the start of their home invitational on Saturday Jan. 28. Both sides had a successful meet; the men took first place out of six teams, while the women took first out of five teams. (Keith Walters/Campus Photographer)

The Geneseo men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams hosted the Geneseo Invitational on Saturday Jan. 28 at Alumni Pool, taking first place on both sides. The men finished with 653 points, outperforming six other teams. The women faced five other teams, and finished with a score of 601.

Senior swimmer Kevin Schaub led the men’s side with first-place finishes in the 200-yard butterfly, 200-yard backstroke and 200-yard individual medley. He was also part of Geneseo’s winning team in the 200-yard medley relay.

On the women’s side, senior diver Claudia Kolakowski swept the diving events, finishing with top marks in the 1-meter and 3-meter dives. Kolakowski was named the Geneseo Knights’ Women’s Swimming and Diving Female Athlete of the Week for her performance and was named one of SUNYAC’s Athletes of the Week.

Another top performer included senior swimmer Brian Yale, who set a pool record of 52.68 seconds in the 100-yard backstroke. Senior swimmer Emily Smith also claimed individual victories in the 100-yard backstroke and 200-yard backstroke; in addition, Smith swam one leg of the first-place 200-yard medley relay team.

The meet marked the team’s senior day, and senior members were honored with a ceremony just before they took to the pool to compete in the final home meet of their careers. Schaub, Kolakowski, Yale and Smith—all seniors—had performances to remember, representing the team’s strong senior leadership. Head coach Paul Dotterweich reflected on his accomplished group of seniors.

“Swimming’s not an easy sport; there aren’t 2,000 people packing the pool like there are at the ice rink,” he said. “To make it through four years is challenging, but I think it says a lot about the camaraderie that they have, and the experience they are getting through our program.”

Despite the margin of victory over the competitors on Saturday Jan. 28, Dotterweich did not believe that the team had a strong performance by their standards—but at this point in the season that can be expected, according to Dotterweich.

“They lifted pretty heavy on Friday, and I think their legs were very tired,” he said.  “Overall, while we were successful in terms of beating the other teams, performance-wise they were feeling it a little bit. Ultimately, for us, it’s about performing at the end of the year at the SUNYAC Championship.”

Both the men and women have equal dual meet records of 7-2 on the season, and will head into the postseason in February looking to repeat as SUNYAC champions. Dotterweich credits the team’s culture for the consistent success.

“Winning, tradition, sustainability—everything comes from the culture of the team,” he said. “We recruit to that and bring in people that are buying into what we’re all about. We’ve got a great group right now, and they really have bought into that culture and those values.”

Postseason goals for the Knights include winning another SUNYAC Championship, and then sending athletes to represent Geneseo at the NCAA Division III National Championships in Shenandoah, Texas, from March 15-18.

The team has one last competition on their schedule before heading to the SUNYAC Championships. They will send just 18 athletes to compete at the Ithaca Invitational on Saturday Feb. 11, and then turn their focus toward the postseason.

Blue Wave’s strong performance foreshadows future success

It was a good weekend for the Geneseo Blue Wave, as both the men’s and women’s teams came in first place at the Ithaca invitational, which took place from Friday Dec. 2-Sunday Dec. 4. “I was very pleased with the performance of both teams. We have been working hard all semester and took just a couple of days’ rest and they responded well,” head coach Paul Dotterweich said.

Senior men’s swimmer Kevin Schaub continued his impressive season, with a win in the 200m backstroke with a time of 1:52.85. Schaub also swam on two winning relays. Schaub helped win the 200m medley relay along with teammates sophomore swimmer Troy Miller, junior swimmer Scott Guyton and junior swimmer Jeff Doser, with a time of 1:34.24. The same group also won the 400m medley relay with a time of 3:28.91.

“Our medley relay success is a function of the guys on the relay,” Dotterweich said. “They are talented athletes and seem to feed off each other.”

The men were able to win by 600 points because of the team’s depth, in addition to their talent, according to Dotterweich.

The Knights clearly have depth and they have top-end talent, as seen in the performances by junior diver Sam Randall, Doser and Schaub alone week in and week out.

“Sam, Jeff and Kevin are definitely critical to our success,” Dotterweich said. “In most meets, we can count on those guys for multiple wins.”

The women also impressed over the weekend. With the win, they moved to 5-1 overall on the season, same as the men.

Sophomore swimmers Nancy Shemet and Nancy Nasky performed extremely well during the meet. Shemet won the 400m IM with a time of 4:42.79 and finished second in the 200m butterfly. Nasky won the 1,650m freestyle with a time of 17:27.26.

Additionally, Shemet swam on three top-three relays. This included the 200m medley relay with a time of 1:49.23, the 400m medley relay with a time of 4:00.99 and the 400m free relay with a time of 3:33.11.

“Both Nasky and Shemet are important pieces to the puzzle, but similar to the men, we won last weekend because of our depth,” Dotterweich said. “Two weeks ago, Ithaca’s women beat us in a dual meet where having a few studs won’t carry your team. In a championship format, depth wins.”

The women finished with 1,528 points, placing ahead of the second-place Bombers who had 1,433 and third-place Shippensburg who had 1,190.

Both sides of the Blue Wave are off until Jan. 14, when they have a tri-meet at Carnegie Mellon. They will face the hosts and Westminster.

The Blue Wave will focus on finishing the season strong, however, Dotterweich stated two specific goals they are focusing on: “Simple: win SUNYACs and send people to NCAAs.”

Blue Wave surfs to success

The Geneseo men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams have recently had phenomenal performances. In their last meets against Ithaca College and Hartwick College, the Knights went 3-1. The men won both of their meets with a score of 213-81 over Ithaca and 207-92 over Hartwick. The women lost to Ithaca, 162-138, but defeated Hartwick 246-54. Senior swimmer Kevin Schaub gave another dominating performance against Ithaca and Hartwick, with four different event victories. Schaub won the 200m butterfly with a time of 1:56.46, the 200m backstroke with a time of 1:55.17 and the 200m IM with a time of 1:59.60. Schaub also swam a leg in the 200 medley-winning relay, which the Knights won with a time of 1:26.40.

Junior swimmer Jeff Doser also had a fantastic meet. Doser won two individual events—the 100 and 200m freestyle—and helped add a leg in the 200m free relay. In his 200m freestyle win, Doser finished with a time of 1:42.75—the 17th fastest time nationally.

Other notable events include 1 and 3m diving, where junior diver Sam Randall won both, posting a score of 267.10 in the 1m and 311.95 in the 3m. The men are now 4-1 and will face Ithaca again for the Ithaca Invitational on Friday Dec. 2-Sunday Dec. 4.

The women also had a strong meet to bring them to 4-1 this season, same as the men. Sophomore swimmer Nancy Nasky won three individual events in the meet, including the 1,000m freestyle with a time of 10:43.94, the 200m freestyle with a time of 1:58.77 and the 500m freestyle with a time of 5:15.47. Not only did Nasky win the 1,000m, but she did so with a time that ranks 21st nationally.

Other notable events included diving, where senior diver Claudia Kolakowski finished in third in the 1 and 3m dives. The women will also swim next at the Ithaca Invitational Friday Dec. 2-Sunday Dec. 4.

With the Knights performing so well in the meets against Ithaca and Hartwick, two swimmers were honored with SUNYAC Athlete of the Week recognitions. Doser won Men’s Swimming & Diving Swimmer of the Week and Nasky won Women’s Swimming & Diving Swimmer of the Week.

Three swimmers were honored with SUNYAC Athlete of the Week earlier on Nov. 18. Schaub won Men’s Swimmer of the Week, Randall won Men’s Diver of the Week and sophomore swimmer Sydney Ng won Women’s Swimmer of the Week.

After the invitational, the men and women do not have another meet until Jan. 14, when the Blue Wave will face both Westminster College and Carnegie Mellon University at Westminster.

Blue Wave victorious at first home meet

It’s November, which means that the Geneseo men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams’ seasons have just kicked off. The Blue Wave had their first conference meet on Saturday Nov. 5, where the men and women took down SUNY Fredonia 168-127 and 168-121, respectively, at Alumni Pool. The win took the men to 1-1 and the women to 2-1 on the year. This comes after their season opener, where the men fell 133.5-109.5 and the women won 130.5-112.5 against Canisius College at Erie Community College.

They had multiple event winners against Fredonia, including senior swimmer Kevin Schaub and junior diver Sam Randall. Schaub took first in the 200m butterfly with 1:56.95, the 500m freestyle with 5:04.01 and helped to win the 400m medley relay. Randall took first in the 1-meter diving with a score of 303.35 and second in the 3-meter diving with a score of 324.90.

Due to their performance against Canisius, not one but three of the athletes were named SUNYAC athletes of the week in swimming and diving.

Junior swimmer Jeff Doser was awarded Men’s Swimmer of the Week for winning two individual events and being part of a winning relay team. Senior swimmer Leeza Seelbach was awarded Women’s Swimmer of the Week after also winning two individual events and for being a part of a winning relay team. Additionally, senior diver Claudia Kolakowski won Women’s Diver of the Week after winning both of her events. “Our team is always happy to have SUNYAC swimmers and divers of the week,” Randall said. “The fact that our team had three speaks volumes to the amount of effort that our coaches put into our program.”

The Knights won the 2016 SUNYAC Championship, and have the same goal for 2017.

“We are looking again to win the SUNYAC Championship, as well as send a larger group of athletes to the national championship,” Randall said. “I believe our team can win SUNYACs for both men and women’s teams.”

It isn’t just high goals, though, that they set in the pool. This year, the team also has a goal of a cumulative 3.3 GPA, and they hope that several of their athletes can make the dean’s or president’s list each semester. “They truly go above and beyond to push us both academically and athletically to become the model program on this campus,” Randall said.

Randall is one of the best Division III divers in the entire country. Last year, he made it to the NCAA Regional Championship, winning the 1-meter title, and this year he intends to do the same.

“My individual goals this year are to go back to nationals and to achieve two more All-American award finishes,” Randall said.

On top of making sure returning teammates do well this year, the team does an excellent job at making the freshmen feel right at home, as the change to the college level can be difficult.

“We have a program in which we have ‘bigs’ and ‘littles’ on the team, where an upperclassman is responsible for looking after a freshman … the freshman class is always welcomed with open arms,” Randall said. “As a team, we acknowledge that the freshmen will one day become the leaders.”

The teams are in action again this Saturday Nov. 12 when they face off against conference rivals SUNY Cortland at 1 p.m.

Blue Wave men, women capture another SUNYAC title

After an impressive season, the Blue Wave men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams proved that they are the best and brought home another SUNYAC title.

Both sides of the team have become rather familiar with the SUNYAC podium—this particular title is the women’s 24th championship and the men’s 23rd championship. The two teams have continuously shown that with all of the hard work they put in throughout the season, they are the worthiest of earning the title. Head coach Paul Dotterweich noted that the win was well-deserved.

“Winning a championship is a great feeling,” he said. “There is a lot of work and dedication that goes into our season by the athletes and staff. Bringing home the title is the reward for the hard work.”

This season was particularly significant for the Blue Wave. Not only was the team dynamic very strong, but many pool records were broken as well. Due to the team having such positive bonds and an overall desire to win, they were able to come together to dominate. They showed that while skill is important, having a supportive team structure is just as necessary.

“We were able to do some things this year that we have not done in the past. Our dual meet season was exceptional form—start to finish—with beating [Division I] Canisius College to break several pool records in our last few meets,” Dotterweich said. “Winning two championships, breaking several team and conference records, we won 23 of 40 events at the championships—that's pretty awesome.”

After having such a great year, the team has to unfortunately say goodbye to some key teammates—13 seniors, to be exact. With this being the case, next year’s athletes must make sure to make their own mark.

“We graduate a lot of talent and leadership in our senior class. It will be important for the younger athletes to step up and work hard in the off season to get ready for next season if we want to win a couple more next year,” Dotterweich said. “If the younger athletes have learned anything from their senior class, it should be hard work and dedication. If this is to be true, then they should have no problem continuing the team’s high success rate.”

  With all of the success they have had this year, the Blue Wave has a lot to live up to next season. With their current repertoire of countless victories and solid leadership provided by Dotterweich, the Blue Wave should come back on top for seasons to come.

It is an emotional end to a great season with the team saying goodbye to major leadership figures. Dotterweich explained that he does his best to recognize everyone’s devotion and hard work on the team and makes sure to thank them for all that they have done.

They have been exceptional all year and words can't express the pride I feel when I think about all they have given to the program this year,” Dotterweich said. “A special shout out to the seniors who have worked diligently in the pool and the classroom over the past four years and have created a model program.”

Swim remains consistent through start of season

The Geneseo swim teams proved themselves yet again by having the men take second place and the women take third place out of a total 11 teams at the Ithaca Winter Invitational on Friday Dec. 4–Sunday Dec. 6. Not only did both sides of the team place well as a whole, but they also had outstanding individual performances from multiple swimmers.

Freshman distance swimmer Nancy Nasky took second place overall while breaking the Geneseo record for the 1,650 freestyle. Nasky’s performance helped put the team in third place, while also boosting morale with her impressive achievement.

Senior backstroke and individual medley swimmer Kristian Tialios helped bring the Blue Wave into second place by taking three top eight finishes, including fourth place in the 200 individual medley, sixth in the 100 backstroke and seventh in the 200 backstroke.

These types of performances not only enhance the placement of the team in the overall competition, but also help strengthen their confidence and enthusiasm as a team. Head coach Paul Dotterweich expressed his belief that a fair portion of the team’s success can be attributed to the strong team camaraderie.

Due to Blue Wave’s consistent achievement over these past few seasons, Dotterweich keeps the training and work out regiments relatively the same each year. His reasoning behind this method is that it obviously continues to work for them.

“It’s kind of like a pause, rewind, replay. The program is pretty much the same,” he said. “The athletes are doing a good job. But if anything, I would say that we definitely have better chemistry this year than we did last year.”

By keeping the same schedule every year, it is easy for Dotterweich to get a sense of how successful the Blue Wave will be throughout the season. At their current position, Dotterweich explained that the team should do well in the SUNYAC Tournament again and may even have some swimmers qualify for nationals.

The Blue Wave has competed against very talented teams this season and has shown that the team belongs amongst the best. They fell only to Cornell University and La Salle University—two Division I teams. At the same time, however, other Division III teams—such as SUNY New Paltz—are showing that they, too, are just as worthy of taking on more difficult competition. Dotterweich noted that he believes the tough competition will inspire the Blue Wave to push themselves to perform at the highest level.

“It’s good to see that other teams in our conference are swimming fast,” he said. “That makes us better; it challenges our team to be at our best, which is good for us.”

With final exams and winter break coming up, the Blue Wave’s season will be slightly interrupted. The swimmers are guaranteed to be home between Dec. 22–28, but they have a meet on Jan. 3. This time is a personal challenge for all the swimmers and it allows Dotterweich to see who really wants to end their season strong.

“I always call this the ‘you time,’” he said. “I tell them that this is the time that you decide how you want the season to go.”

Knight of the week: Jeff Doser

For some athletes, Geneseo is the perfect combination of challenging academics and successful athletics. Such is the case for sophomore freestyle swimmer Jeff Doser—the Geneseo men’s swim team allows for Doser to strive both academically and in the NCAA.

While he maintains a double major in biology and mathematics, Doser is also breaking records for the swim team. These kinds of athletes are usually very successful, as being part of a varsity team and pushing themselves academically requires certain organizational and disciplinary skills—both of which Doser managed to figure out early on in his college career.

Doser grew up just outside of Rochester in Penfield, New York, where his swim career began approximately seven years ago. Being the youngest of four children, Doser was very much influenced by his older siblings—especially his oldest brother—when it came to swimming. His two older brothers encouraged Doser to try the sport for himself, resulting in what was soon to be a very successful swim career. Doser was the captain of his high school swim team and he also swam for a club team. He also swam for the Section V state team for three years.

With so many varsity athletes on campus, being selected to represent your team as a whole is very impressive. Doser was selected this year to represent the men’s swim team as a member of the Geneseo Student Athlete Advisory Committee. In SAAC, select players of each varsity team go to discuss topics such as issues among student athletes and what can be done within the Division III rules to resolve these problems. Being selected for this demonstrates that Doser has notable leadership qualities and that he is capable of making a difference within the Geneseo athletic community.

Doser’s events on the swim team include the 50, 100 and 200-meter freestyle swim, all of which he is successful in. Doser expressed his belief that he has been able to help the team become stronger in these events, particularly because of the close relationship the men on the team have.

“I think that the 100 and 200 free are weak spots on the team, but I believe that I have helped fill that spot,” he said. “I also think that we all work together really well on relays. We are a close group and being as close as we are helps us go faster during meets.”

Having such a strong bond with teammates has not only helped the team collectively, but has helped Doser personally. With support and encouragement from teammates, Doser’s personal goals of continuing his victories in dual meets, placing in all three of his events at the SUNYAC Tournament and ultimately swimming his way to nationals become even more attainable.

With his achievements so far—and his level of motivation and positivity—Doser has a very high probability of achieving his dreams during the 2015-2016 swim season.

Blue Wave look strong with 5-0 start

The Geneseo men’s and women’s swim teams have maintained a very impressive record through the beginning of their season. Currently 5-0, both teams are in great shape for the remainder of the season.

Head coach Paul Dotterweich expressed that he has a lot of optimism in regards to the future of the Blue Wave. “I would anticipate that, this year, we would be the favorite to win again on both sides,” he said. “This level of confidence will allow for the team to keep up their hard work, as they know how successful their results will be.”

As with any other team, having a good chemistry amongst the swimmers is essential. Dotterweich summed up this year’s team chemistry in one word: “awesome”—and this proves to be true when looking at their overall team statistics from this season so far.

“I figured out many years ago that team chemistry is really important. Even though it is not a team sport where we are relying on chemistry on game day, I think the chemistry of the team is so important in terms of the athlete’s motivation to perform, their motivation to come work hard at practice,” Dotterweich said. “And with recruiting, I think it is equally as important to find new athletes with our culture and that are going to buy into athletes, as opposed to finding athletes who are just good athletes.”

Having teammates who get along will make all the difference in any sport and while swim may be relatively individualistic, it is still very necessary. The new members of the swim team have made a positive contribution to the overall atmosphere of the team, as they exude positivity and enthusiasm during practices and meets. Dotterweich explained that this is exactly what he searches for during the recruiting process.

“We won’t sacrifice a person’s value or where they fit in on the team for talent,” Dotterweich said. “I would rather take the person that fits into our team’s culture and values over the person who is a slightly better athlete and does not fit into the culture and values because I think, ultimately, those athletes will do better in the end.” This theory has proven to work out very well for Dotterweich, as he has had a tremendous amount of success throughout his 15 seasons of being the head coach for the Blue Wave here at Geneseo.

After earning the SUNYAC title for both the men’s and women’s team last year for the 10th time, it seems very feasible for the team to do it an 11th time. Dotterweich explained that the athletes are already ahead in terms of times during their events in comparison to this point last year—providing hard evidence that the team has improved since last season.

With their chemistry, talent, hard work and coaching staff, the Geneseo swim team has everything working in their favor to result in a rewarding season.

Blue Wave camaraderie key in recurring successes

Following a season in which both the Geneseo men’s and women’s swim teams swept the SUNYAC Championships, the Blue Wave have started their 2015-2016 season with no intentions of relinquishing those titles.

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Blue Wave freshman heads to NCAA Championships

In just his first year with the Blue Wave, freshman Sam Randall has qualified for the NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships which will take place from March 18–21 in Shenandoah, Texas. For the Pittsford, New York-native, this sort of early success is nothing new.

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Seniors reflect on swimming experience with Blue Wave

The Blue Wave has reached the time of the year where it always seem to excel—the end of the season, high pressure meets. Westchester County native and accounting major senior Donald McLoughlin and Rhinebeck, New York native and economics major senior Branden Dahlem can both reflect back on their time at Geneseo in the pool with reverence.

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Blue Wave dominates at home

Every swimmer wants to perform their best on senior night. It’s the last time athletes perform in the pool that they practice every day in. For both nationally ranked Blue Wave teams, that became a reality on Saturday Feb. 7 with the men winning by nearly 200 points and the women winning by over 250.

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Blue Wave tops New Paltz as Geneseo Invitational approaches

It seems like all the Blue Wave knows how to do is win. The team continued to impress on Saturday Jan. 31 at home against SUNY New Paltz with both the men and women earning victories.

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Senior swimmer attributes success to team support

The Blue Wave is a relatively young team. With so many freshmen and sophomores, experienced athletes like senior Abigail Max are incredibly important. Hailing from New Hartford, New York, Max has been on the team since arriving at Geneseo—coming with prior skill and an eagerness to continue swimming.

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Player profile: John Nasky, Blue Wave

Upstate New York seems to be a breeding ground for great swimmers. Olympian Ryan Lochte was born in Rochester and spent time as a child living in Canandaigua—a town just outside of Rochester. Blue Wave senior John Nasky, too, hails from Rochester—graduating from Brighton High School. Nasky has been on the team since arriving at Geneseo and started swimming year-round in his sophomore year of high school. “Before [high school], I didn’t really swim much,” Nasky said. “I knew how to swim, but I never practiced or joined a team.”

Nasky said swimming has been a big part of his life at college. Still, he has found it hard to balance the rigor of swimming with the other activities of college.

“I guess my biggest disappointment would not be listening to coach freshman year,” Nasky said. “Taking his suggestion about my GPA and other life activities would have been better.”

In his last year here at Geneseo, Nasky practices vigorously two times per day. There is no doubt that the sport is physically demanding and it has begun to take a bit of a toll on Nasky. “[Head coach Paul Dotterweich] is working us pretty hard—I would like to continue after [college], but I think my body needs a bit of a rest.”

Even with Dotterweich working the team hard, Nasky still has a good working relationship with his coach and values their mutual respect, saying that Dotterweich takes his thoughts into consideration.

“The good team chemistry between both the men’s and the women’s teams is a big factor to the teams’ success in his time here,” Nasky said. “Our team is like a family, which is great. We are lucky to have a good relationship with the girl’s team and we always hang out together. I live with four guys on the team. We all get along pretty well.”

While there were a lot of proud moments for Nasky involving the team, he said that his proudest moment was from the SUNYAC Tournament last year. “A couple of things happened [last year]—I made nationals and we also won SUNYACs,” Nasky said. “We beat SUNY Cortland by a lot ... so that was pretty exciting.”

Nasky has been a devoted athlete, always trying to improve, both for his personal success and the team’s success. “We’re doing pretty well this season … you always want to go faster, but I think at the same time you don’t want to strain your body,” Nasky said. “Everyone wants to do better so it’s all good.”

Intense practices propel Blue Wave

When thinking of physically demanding and rigorous sports, swimming and diving may not be at the top of everyone’s list. The amount of effort put into each kick and reach in order to have the body move like a well-oiled machine is actually tremendous. The divers have a whole different skill set—they stand high above the pool staring down into a water-filled pit, trying to run every move and motion of the dive through their head. With every stroke, tumble and turn of the head, the diver’s fate can be determined. Seconds are divided into milliseconds––it will all determine personal success and ultimately the success of the team.

Both the men’s and the women’s teams had success on Saturday Nov. 8 against SUNY Fredonia. Freshman Jeff Doser won three individual events for the men and senior Abigail Max took two individual events to lead the Blue Wave.

The effort must be unrelenting until the race is officially over—with hearts pounding and heavy breathing. There is no exception to this physical rigor both in the practices and meets of the Geneseo Blue Wave. Led by 15-year veteran head coach Paul Dotterweich, the swimming and diving teams practice strenuously. With a demanding six-day schedule, the athletes have to constantly push themselves to new physical and mental extremes. In fact a large portion of physical training––and sports as a whole––is mental toughness. How far is an athlete willing to go for their team or even themselves? That question depends on the individual—whether or not they have the ability to propel themselves to victory.

A sport is a game in itself; a game of sacrifice. With essentially every sport, every athlete has to sacrifice something. Whether it is a physical sacrifice or personal sacrifice, to achieve the common goal of a championship, athletes have to be selflessly devoted.

“You have to give something to get something” holds especially true in sports—to get the gold you have to give something up, whether it be a tangible object or the body. Nothing can stand in the way of a devoted athlete and their goal. This is why more programs are becoming available to assist athletes when the mental or physical toll is too much, and stress becomes unmanageable.

The length an athlete is willing to go to achieve greatness depends on who they are as a person and if they’re willing to “have a moment of pain for a lifetime of glory.”

The teams take to the pool next against SUNY Cortland on Saturday Nov. 15.

Blue Wave splashes into season

As the temperature begins to change in Geneseo, so do the sports teams. The swimming and diving teams are looking to pick up right where they left off last year. Both the men’s and the women’s teams won SUNYAC titles, sending six players to the NCAA championships with the women finishing in the top 20 in the country. Head coach Paul Dotterweich is in his 15th year of coaching at Geneseo. He hopes that the team has the same success that they had last year.

"We want to win two championships again,” Dotterweich said. “It's always our goal to send as many players possible to the national championships.” While it’s hard to improve upon a season like last year’s, the bar is set even higher for the Blue Wave.

Dotterweich is still confident that Geneseo will have another successful season this year, noting how hard the players train. "We have a lot of talent in the pool and we’ve got a great set of divers this year,” he said. “I wouldn't be surprised if we won two championships, but I try not to get too excited until January."

Advancement into the postseason is determined by overall times and athlete performance during the year. This could be tough since Geneseo has a more challenging road this season.

“We have a reasonably hard schedule,” Dotterweich said. “I like it that way because it will lead to better races and [athletes] to push themselves further." Non-conference opponents are typically more competitive than SUNYAC opponents for the Blue Wave.

Composed of 30 women and 29 men, the teams are well-developed in any lineup. Dotterweich also noted that the large incoming freshman pool––no pun intended––will further solidify the teams’ success, adding high quality swimmers and divers.

The teams practice vigorously in the mornings and afternoons on Monday and Tuesday and have a lighter workout on Wednesday to allow for player recovery. The intense weight room and pool workouts continue on Thursday and Friday, leading up to matches on Saturday. The athletes know that this level of effort is necessary to remain on top—it’s paid off, having been champions on the women’s side 11 of the past 14 years and 13 of the past 14 years on the men’s side.

So far, Dotterweich is proud of all the success and commitment put forth. “They sacrifice a lot,” he said. “But it’s all worth it in the end when we put banners on the wall.”