By: Chris Wells, Staff Writer
Towson hit the road last weekend as the men’s and women’s swim teams traveled to compete in a three day Carolina Collegiate Invitational in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and the dive teams participated in the JMU Diving Invitational in Harrisonburg, Virginia.
“The coaching staff really wanted to find an invitational style meet for the divers to attend before conferences. The fact that one with a high level of competition, including some CAA divers, fell into our laps worked out tremendously,” Acting Head Coach Jake Shrum said. “The swimming invitational was an opportunity for a lot of our swimmers to have a championship style meet that they tapered for.”
The Carolina Collegiate Invitational competition was loaded with tough schools such as Duke, NC State, UNC, Old Dominion, UNC Wilmington, James Madison and William & Mary.
At the end of the three-day event on the men’s side senior Sean Patterson earned a sixth finishing the 200-yard backstroke finals event with a time of 1:56.16. Patterson also placed eighth in the 100-yard backstroke finals (55.20).
Freshman Aaron Magazine placed 13th in the 200-yard freestyle finals event with a time of 1:45.26.
“The few swimmers that really jump out were Aaron Magazine’s 500fr and Haley Sutton’s 200bk at finals as well as Sean Patterson’s 200bk at prelims,” Shrum said. “Grace Hansen also had a very strong meet all around.”
The women had a strong showing in day three led by freshman Haley Sutton earning fifth in the 200-yard backstroke finals event with a time of 2:04.20 and fellow freshman Zeynep Balto followed in eight-place (2:11.64).
The 200-yard butterfly event saw four Tigers compete, led by freshman Grace Hansen finishing sixth (2:08.02), Emily Rezac placing seventh (2:08.09) and Tasha Reidenbach (2:10.89) and Cami Andreini (2:11.04) finishing 10th and 11th, respectively.
Hansen finished fifth in the 400-yard individual medley finals in a time of 4:30.49 with Reidenbach (4:34.73) and Andreini (4:36.66) following in seventh and eighth.
Ali Holm finished 11th in the 200-yard breaststroke finals (2:29.62) and placed 13th in the 100-yard breaststroke finals (1:08.99).
The participating teams in the JMU Diving Invitational were James Madison, Clemson, Ohio, West Virginia and Virginia.
Freshman Emily Wilson placed 14th in the 1-meter event with a score of 228.85.
Jake Casey had a strong showing for the men earning 10th place in both the 1-meter (136.80) and 3-meter (138.55) events.
Towson will start their postseason with the two-day Colonial Athletic Association Diving Championship Feb. 20-21 at University of Delaware’s Rawstrom Natatorium. The CAA Swimming Championships will follow Feb. 24-27 at the Collegiate School Aquatics Center in Richmond, Virginia.
“With such a high number of freshman in that group it was imperative to simulate what competing at CAA’s would be like,” Shrum said. “At the diving meet we saw our a lot of our athletes continue to progress and get more comfortable with their championship lists, as well as identified some things that we can really focus on in the next two weeks.”