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A fresh start for the swimmers

The Brandeis swimming and diving team opened the new season with a meet at Wheaton College on Saturday, Oct. 17. The men’s team fell short with a 107.5 to 177.5 decision while the women’s team rallied only 84 points against the Lyons’ 206. However, sophomore Zach Diamond ’18 and Kylie Herman ’19 both topped their squad with three and two personal victories in the competition, respectively.

The exciting meet began with the 200-yard medley relay in which the Judges earned two points for both teams. Despite the slow start, Diamond and Joanna Murphy ’17 both dominated in the long distance events. Diamond finished the 1,000-yard freestyle with a 35-second lead, and Murphy came out on top after a chase from four Lyons’ swimmers, finishing with 18 seconds to spare. Herman joined their squad with a six-second advantage in the women’s 200-yard freestyle event. However, the Lyons seemed to get their rhythm back as they showcased impressive speed and strength in the rest of the events, only sparing two victories for the Judges. Diamond again stepped up for the team with two more individual victories at 200-yard butterfly and 500-yard freestyle. Herman ended her first college meet with one more win in the 500-yard freestyle with a four-second lead.

In spite of three titles, Diamond wasn’t satisfied with the performance. “I feel that I could have pulled off a better performance … my times should have been faster for this time of year than that of last year,” he said. Diamond also has high expectations for the Judges in this new season: “This year especially we are going to work on speed and endurance a lot more than in years past … Our team is ever more so driven to succeed this year, especially with our new assistant coach on deck with us.”

In regard to the loss, Diamond isn’t too worried about the team’s performances. “It’s also very early in the season, so our times probably won’t match those come February. Additionally, Wheaton’s men’s swim team is nearly double the size of our team, which is another factor that contributed to our loss,” he said. The Lyons indeed had more chances to win in multiple events, but the huge victories in long-distance freestyle events have firmly proven the Judges to be competitors this season. Nevertheless, the Judges weren’t able to achieve the titles in backstroke and relay events. “We have a very strong recruiting class on tap for next year, and we hopefully will get faster swimmers throughout this year’s recruitment process,” Diamond said.

The team traveled to the University of Rochester the following weekend for an invitational meet. Both teams will race next on Sunday, Nov. 8 at Worcester Polytechnic Institute at 1 p.m.

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