Rutgers celebrates Senior Day sweep over Georgetown, Providence
With emotions running high on Senior Day in the last regular season meet, feelings translated into a dominating performance on Saturday at the Rutgers Aquatic Center.
The Rutgers swimming and diving team dominated Georgetown and Providence, defeating the Hoyas and Friars by scores of 181.50-94.50 195-78, respectively.
“I was really happy with how we did Saturday. To send the seniors out with two wins at our home pool is exactly what we wanted to do,” said head coach Phil Spiniello. “I was happy with how we showed up as a team. We had a lot of good signs of what we have to do in two weeks.”
Before the meet, the four seniors of the team, Greta Leberfinger, Brogan Lee, Caroline Carlisle and Lindsay Gibson-Brokop, were honored for their service as Scarlet Knights.
Knowing it would be their last time competing at their home front with fans and teammates, it was an emotional ceremony for the seniors.
At the day of the meet, Rutgers was ready and it showed from the start. The Knights swept the first three spots in five of the events they competed in, while also coming in first place in 12-of-13 events.
The four seniors were impressive in their final meet.
Carlisle placed second in the 500 freestyle (5:09.99) and fourth in the 200 freestyle (1:57.08).
“I’m very happy because it was only two seconds off my best time and right on with my best this year,” Carlisle said. “The extra rest that we got this week definitely helped to make a difference.”
Gibson-Brokop placed third in the 100 backstroke with a time of 1:01.28.
“I wasn’t too excited [about my time],” Gibson-Brokop said. “You’re body is starting to adapt to the different amount of work. I try to ignore what the times are and focus on race plans or the specifics of a race. ”
Leberfinger placed first in the 100 breaststroke with a season-best time of 1:03.41, along with tying for first in the 100 free touching the wall at 53.17.
Lee was able to get a season-best time of 5:13.01 in the 500 freestyle along with a result of 2:15.47 in the 200 butterfly.
On the diving boards, it was the young guns who stole the show.
Freshman Addison Walkowiak continued her stellar rookie season, taking first in the one-meter dive and three-meter dive.
To complement her results, sophomore Alyssa Black and freshman Morgan Engel both followed Walkowiak with a pair of second and third place finishes in the same two diving events.
Evidently, the extra rest that the team gained leading up to the meet paid dividends.
“You can tell that we are starting to rest with less practices,” Spiniello said on his team’s performance. “It will continue to show the next ten days and we are looking for lifetime best swims at the Big Ten Championship meet. I think that how we swam gave people a lot of confidence of what we will be doing two weeks from now.”
Overall, it was an impressive last outing for the Scarlet Knights before the Big Ten Championships are held in Columbus, Ohio. It gave them many positives to assess and improve on in the next nine days.
“This meet definitely raised our confidence going into our conference meet,” Carlisle said. “A lot of people were going season best so it’s definitely a good sign going forward.”
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