Even a plunge into the Campus Pool couldn’t put out the fire the UCSB men’s and women’s swim teams set this past weekend.
The Gauchos swam by Irvine last Saturday afternoon in their last home meet of the season, as well as their last meet before traveling to Long Beach to compete in the Big West Championships.
"This was a very casual, fun way to finish," Head Coach Gregg Wilson said. "We allowed the kids to swim in one event, and we let them pick [the event]."
The UCSB women’s team beat the Anteaters 105-82 by placing 1st in seven of 12 events. The squad can attribute its win to a number of notable performances that included fast swims by sophomore Brenna Wilkinson, junior Karen Snyder, and freshman Leslie Fowles.
Wilkinson turned in an incredible time of 23.78 seconds in the 50-meter free, while Snyder smoked the competition and earned a first in the 200 free, with a time of 1:55.13. Fowles was the highlight of the breaststroke competition where she turned in a time of 2:25.62, which was good enough to earn another first place finish for the Gauchos.
There were a number of key performances on the men’s side as well. Senior Mike Sevier took away his first collegiate victory in the 1000 free, and sophomore Anders Nelson swam a lifetime best in the 100 free. Junior Chris May also notched a lifetime best in the 200 breast. Junior Seth Derrick had a great show in the 50 free, and he managed another first place finish with a time of 21.26.
"This meet was pretty much the first time all year that I didn’t have to swim the 200-meter before [the 100-meter], so I wasn’t as tired," Nelson said.
Wilson is happy with his teams’ performance against Irvine, and is looking to prepare his squad with a needed rest for the season’s most climactic meet: the Big West Championships on Feb. 22-24. The men’s team has one of the best records of any sports team at UCSB, as it has dominated the Big West by taking 1st for 22 consecutive years.
"It was really a meet showcasing," Wilson said. "What we want to do now is to take the next two weeks to prepare. We are backing off the morning workouts, and we do less overall distance in the training. More rest and higher quality. We’re basically just buffing up."