Trying to make a splash: Swimming and diving competes in Patriot League Championships

In their last event of the season, the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams looked to end on a high note.

The Leopards traveled to Bucknell University on Feb. 15 to compete in the Patriot League Championships – a four day event. The team got off to a slow start, with only a few swimmers setting their season bests in the water.

Lafayette’s best finish of the day came in the 800 meter relay, with juniors Xavier Laracuente and Sam Haines, freshman Bryce Currie and sophomore James Grieb placing sixth with a time of 6:52.99. Other highlights of the first day include new bests in the 200 freestyle by both Laracuente and sophomore Julia Hall. At the end of the first day, both the men and women sat in 10th place.

“We had some ups and downs on the first day of the meet, some of the relay times were best times by a lot others were on the other end of the spectrum,” coach Jim Dailey said. “That’s expected. Adrenaline and anxiety start with the same first letter.”

The Leopards hit the ground running in day two of the event in Lewisburg as freshman Maureen McShane posted the 26th spot in the 500 freestyle with a time of 5:09.51. During the afternoon portion of the event, senior Issaiah Coldren placed 15th in the one meter diving event and competed in the “B” finals.

Dailey said he was particularly pleased with Coldren’s performance and stated that he was looking forward to watching him compete in the three meter event. Despite this, both the men’s and women’s teams remained in tenth place heading into Friday.

Day three was headlined by Haines’ performance in the 100 butterfly as he narrowly missed the finals, finishing in 17th place. There were three all-time top 10 performances in Lafayette swimming history that came in day three. Sophomore Reeve Lanigan posted a time of 1:07.57 in the 100 meter breaststroke, sophomore Faye Melekos posted a time of 57.56 in the 100 fly and Halls’ split timed at 23.84 in the 200 meter relays. It was a solid day for the Leopards as some of their best times in the pool came last Friday in Kinney Natatorium.

Two Leopards, Coldren and sophomore Brian Ross, qualified for the conference finals on the final day of the competition on Feb. 18. Ross grabbed 14th place in the 200 yard backstroke with a time of 1:54.45 and Coldren placed 16th in the three meter competition finishing with a score of 131.05.

With the tournament coming to a close, it was Navy who secured the Patriot League title on both sides, with the men and women of Lafayette earning tenth place.

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