It was both a joyous celebration and a sad goodbye for the women’s swimming and diving team this weekend, as three seniors helped beat UC Davis and University of the Pacific in what was the final home meet of the season for UCSB and the last of their individual collegiate careers. The men’s team, which did not lose any seniors, was also victorious against UOP by a score of 153-102. The women’s team beat the Aggies 190-10 and UOP 219-60.
[media-credit id=20238 align=”alignleft” width=”250″][/media-credit]Halfway through the meet, seniors Missy Burley, Astrid Amsallem and Brittany Borowitz were honored for their time spent as part of the UCSB swimming and diving team. The break provided an intermission to introduce and speak about each athlete’s contributions to the program.
“Losing them is going to be hard for our team,” Assistant Coach Tim Siciliano said. “Missy is the pioneer of the diving program. Brittany is like the mom of the team, and she’s done such a great job. And Astrid, she’s just unbelievably driven.”
The men’s medley relay team of junior Kevin Ferguson, junior Tim Freeman, sophomore Max Horrell and junior Chris Peterson won with a time of 1:32.18. Peterson, junior Garrett Thompson, freshman Lucas Norman and freshman Andrew Dossa helped improve UCSB’s score with first through fourth place finishes in the men’s 200-yard freestyle.
“We’ve been working really hard,” Norman said. “It’s cool to see us do so well like that and see our practice pay off.”
Freshman Sophia Yamamuchi, who was named MPSF Swimmer of the Week last week, posted three first-place finishes in both the 100 and 200-yard breaststroke and the 200-yard individual medley. Her time of 2:14.31 in the 200-yard breaststroke is currently the second-best time for the event in the MPSF conference.
“Every meet with her is a joy to watch,” Siciliano said. “Having a swim like that just makes me and [Head Coach] Gregg [Wilson] say, ‘wow.’”
Burley was yet again the sole female diver for the Gauchos, and finished third in the one-meter with a score of 204.23 and third on the three-meter board at 200.10. Both scores were career highs for Burley, a former track and field athlete who has been competing as a diver for the first time this season.
One meet remains before the MPSF championship and the end of three swimming careers for Burley, Amsallem and Borowitz.
“[Swimming] is a way of life. I’m going to miss the team,” Amsallem said. “But there’s still a lot to work on. We need to keep in mind that we can swim faster.”