This Saturday, the UCSB swimming team will compete in its last head-to-head matchup of the year in San Luis Obispo. The Blue-Green rivalry will be renewed when UCSB takes on Cal Poly SLO.
Coming into this final regular season meet, the men’s team stands strong having won every meet since a very early October loss to USC. The women’s team will be looking to add another victory to its already impressive season where it stands over the .500 mark.
“This is going to be a big meet, without a doubt, against a team that we are very familiar with,” Head Coach Gregg Wilson explained. “This week will have our main focus, but with [MPSF Championships] just around the corner we also need to make sure we are prepared for that all-important meet. That’s what it all comes down to.”
The last time that these two teams met in November, it was just the Gauchos’ second head-to-head match of the year and their first competing in a dual meet.
Both teams emerged victorious, with the men being led by a young duo of freshman — Billy Mullis and sophomore Dylan Kubik — and winning by a dominant score of 168–109. The women snuck by with a late game, first-fourth sweep of the 400-meter IM that gave them a 150–144 victory.
The women this week will be undoubtedly led by senior breaststroker Katie Records who, after incredible performances in last week’s events, was awarded her second MPSF Player of Week honor this season. Records took home five individual wins over the course of the two meets that the Gauchos competed in last weekend including two first place performances in the 400-meter IM, as well as a first and second place trials in her signature 100-meter breaststroke.
Records could have possibly grabbed some extra hardware for herself, but in the second meet of the weekend she experienced some soreness and didn’t compete in her usual long list of events. After a week of preparation and recovery, Records will be ready to lead her team to another victory over the Mustangs.
Records’ MPSF honor this week is not only her second of the year but also UCSB’s second in a row. Last week the same honors were given to the all-around strong swimmer Kubik for his dominance in a medley of events including the 200-meter freestyle, 200-meter IM and the 200-meter breaststroke. He, as well as a couple of other young athletes, have been the cornerstone to UCSB’s season as they have provided the necessary depth beyond the strong veterans on this team.
“It’s simply phenomenal when you can rely on these young guys this early in their careers here and [that] says a lot about where they will be in two or three years,” Wilson explained.
The first event is set to start this Saturday at 11 a.m. on the campus of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.