Even without half of its squad, the UCSB men and women’s swimming and diving team still celebrated the New Year with a win against West Virginia at Campus Pool this past Friday.
[media-credit id=20138 align=”alignleft” width=”250″][/media-credit]“We weren’t gonna win the meet on depth,” Head Coach Gregg Wilson said. “We were gonna win the meet by stepping up and winning events.”
The men’s team won with an overall score of 161-91, while the women posted a score of 158-103.
Both the men and women’s “A” relay teams won the 200-yard relay during the opening events of the meet. The women’s team of freshman Allie Knight, sophomore Paige Bradley, junior Miranda Schneider and junior Kendall Neely finished the event in 1:46.03, nearly three full seconds faster than the West Virginia time.
The men’s squad finished the same event more than five seconds faster than the Mountaineers, with a time of 1:31.93.
Freshman Andrea Ward continued her success in the 1,000-yard freestyle, posting the second fastest time in UCSB history at 1:06.32. Her time was just .62 seconds away from a 20-year-old Gaucho record held by Tabitha Bonney.
“I was so proud of [Ward],” Wilson said. “It was close but she just pulled it off in the end.”
Several Gauchos won multiple events during the meet, including junior Kevin Ferguson, who won four total on the day. Ferguson won the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 50.62 and the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 44.96. He was also part of the first-place 200-yard medley and 400-yard freestyle relays.
For the women’s team, Bradley took first place in the 100-yard backstroke and the 200-yard breaststroke with times of 1:03.48 and 2:20.07, respectively. She was also part of the 400-yard individual medley, which posted a first-place time of 4:26.88.
Continuing what has been a usual occurrence this season, UCSB dominated the short distance sprint freestyle events. Neely took first in the women’s 50-yard freestyle with a time of 23.76, while junior Chris Peterson did the same for the men with a time of 20.21. The UCSB women took first, second and third place in the 100-yard freestyle event; sophomore Katie Tomkinson won with a time of 52.65, followed by freshman Mariah Tharp and freshman Anne Peanasky.
The men and women’s diving team will travel to UCLA on Jan. 7 for a divers-only invitational meet hosted by the Bruins. The men and women’s swim teams will return to the pool for practice this week and look ahead to Jan. 8, when the Gauchos travel to USC for a meet against the Trojans. The USC meet will begin at 12 p.m.