Men Fourth, Women Fifth in Invitational
Each Tuesday and Thursday morning at six o’clock, the members of the Oberlin swim team roll out of bed and trudge — some all the way from south campus — through the cold and the flurries to practice at Philips Gym.
Last weekend the men and women’s swimming teams reaped the rewards of their sacrifice at the Wooster Invitational Thursday, Nov. 29 to Saturday, Dec. 1. The Yeowomen finished fourth out of nine teams, while the Yeomen battled their way to fifth.
Head Coach Mark Fino expressed pleasure at the team’s performance: “It was a great meet with great swims out of everyone. The team demonstrated that determination and a positive attitude can have a tremendous impact on results. It was a great middle point to the year, and a great point on which to continue strengthening the team.”
The first-years made their presence known on the record board; five of the six records that fell over the course of the three-day meet now belong to newcomers on the team. First-year Sara Kadi kicked things off in that department, racing to an NCAA “B” cut standard and a first-place finish in the 200-yard individual medley, breaking the previous record for Oberlin along the way.
Kadi was not the only Yeowoman to claim a victory on Thursday. First-year Jenny Meltz won the 500-yard freestyle event, closely followed by teammate and fellow first-year Kelsey Sherman in second. Sherman also posted a personal best time in the event. Junior Bryne Ulmschneider and sophomore Laura Fries rounded out the field in that event, finishing fourth and eighth, respectively. The 200-yard freestyle relay team of Kadi, first-year Jordan Jancosek, sophomore Shannon Gallagher and Ulmschneider took fourth overall.
The men also had a thrilling first day, with first-years Corey Spiro and Jon Vimr racing to season-best times in the 200-yard individual medley. Junior Scott McInerney continued to excel in the 50-yard freestyle, finishing fifth, while sophomore Jake Wishart had a personal best time in the event.
The second day of competition saw several more “best” times and two additional records broken. The meet started off with a bang for Oberlin the first event. The women’s 200-yard medley relay team of Kadi, Gallagher, Fries and Ulmschneider finished third, snagging the Oberlin record at the same time. Kadi quickly followed up with a win in the 100-yard butterfly, also breaking the record in that event, and the 800-yard freestyle relay team of Kadi, Meltz, Gallagher and Ulmschneider claimed another first for the Yeowomen. First-year Christine Martin dove well enough to finish third on the one-meter board.
The men had outstanding performances of their own. McInerney had a fourth-place finish in the 100-yard butterfly, while Spiro swam close behind him to touch the wall in fifth. Senior Cory Myers dove for a third-place finish on the one-meter board.
The third and final day of competition was just as exciting as the previous two in the records department. Meltz and Sherman again teamed up for their trademark one-two finish in the 1650-yard freestyle event. Meltz broke both the 1000-yard freestyle and 1650-yard freestyle records, while Sherman posted another personal best time. Kadi was again on the ball with another win and another record broken in the 200-yard butterfly. Fries swam for second place in the 200-yard backstroke event, while Martin dove for another third place in the three-meter dive.
Myers led the Yeomen, finishing third on the three-meter board. Spiro added another third place for the Yeomen in the 200-yard butterfly, and teammates Vimr and senior John Hugens had personal best times in the 200-yard backstroke.
Although the team will not compete again until January, the swimmers still must practice. The team is entering the most training-intensive part of the season: Winter Term. However, if the Wooster meet is any indication, Fino’s Yeomen and Yeowomen have a lot to look forward to as they turn the corner to the conference meet.