CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. – The Virginia Tech swimming and diving program finish the weekend strong as the men swept Duke (202-98) and UNC Wilmington (237-61), while it recorded a first-ever program victory over Florida State (182-117). The women recorded wins over Duke (152-146) and UNC Wilmington (209-91) but fell to Florida State (129-169) Saturday evening at the Christiansburg Aquatic Center.
The men improve to 4-1 overall and 3-1 in the conference, while the women advance to 4-2 and 2-2 in the ACC.
“The men’s team rallied after last night’s tough loss against North Carolina,” commented head coach Ned Skinner. “They came back and got the program’s first-ever win against Florida State. That is a win we are very proud of after barely losing to them in the ACCs last year by three points. We are very excited about how they raced and the energy that they had for each other and it was a great team win for us today. I hope it helps us accelerate as we move deeper into the season.”
Tech’s men dominated from start to finish. The H2Okies came out in the first men’s race of the day posting a new pool record touching the wall first in the 200 medley relay. The quartet of Charlie Higgins, Nathan Hoisington, Karl Botha and Gregory Mahon took home the title with a time of 1:30.27.
Following the 200 medley relay title, the men went ahead and tallied seven more first-place finishes.
Zach McGinnis took home an individual title in the 100 backstroke with a time of 49.67, while helping his 400 freestyle relay team to a first-place finish in the last event of the day. Along with McGinnis, Greg Morgan, Bryan Uncur and Matt Baumler set a pool record in the freestyle relay with a time of 3:03.49.
Freshmen James Crabb and Collin Higgins impressed today, taking home titles of their own in the 200 butterfly and the 200 backstroke, respectively. Crabb posted a time of 1:51.33, while Higgins touched the wall at the 1:49.26 mark.
Following Higgins in the 200 backstroke was four H2Okies. Tom Sheranek placed second with a time of 1:49.48, while Alex Lutterbein and McGinnis followed with times of 1:50.90 and 1:51.14, respectively.
In addition to their relay title, Hoisington and Mahon took home first-place finishes individually. Hoisington posted a time of 2:05.59 in the 200 breaststroke, while Mahon came in at 1:53.29 in the 200 IM. The 200 IM had three other men from Tech place in the top five as Nick Tremols finished third and Philip LaRosa followed fifth.
Despite falling to the Seminoles, the women had a solid outing to finish the weekend with their only loss.
“We are very pleased with the way our women swimmers and divers came together as an overall team today,” noted Skinner. “Once again, our playmakers were making plays and winning events, which are putting them towards the upper echelon of our conference. Overall, it was a great day to get the win over Duke, which is a very strong program in the pool and on the boards. Also, UNC Wilmington is one of the top programs in the CAA.”
The H2Okies posted four individual titles this evening, including two from senior Erika Hajnal. Hajnal touched the wall first at the 10:02.57 mark in the 1000 freestyle and at the 4:54.57 mark in the 500 freestyle.
In addition to Hajnal, freshman Sabrina Benson continues to shine as she recorded another title of her own in the 100 backstroke with a time of 55.71.
Keri Sink picked up points today for the women as she notched top five finishes on the day. In the 100 breaststroke she came in second with a time of 1:04.90, while coming in third at the 2:21.82 mark in the 200 breaststroke. In her final race of the day, she tallied a fifth-place finish in the 200 IM with a time of 2:07.93.
Heather Savage finishes the weekend with solid races. In the 100 butterfly, she recorded a time of 56.40, which was good for second place, while coming in third in the 50 freestyle (23.76) and fourth in the 100 freestyle (51.96).
In diving competition, both team remains consistent notching first-place finishes. Newcomers Logan Kline and Kaylea Arnett placed first and second, respectively, in the 1-meter event. Kline, the junior transfer, recorded a score of 303.75, while Arnett followed with 292.40.
For the men, Logan Shinholser continues to bring in titles as he grabbed the top score of 362.70 in the 3-meter event. Coming in third was John Trope with a score of 341.60, which is a new personal best.
“I thought we did a great job today,” commented head diving coach Ron Piemonte. “We went up against some really tough competitors. Florida State and Duke are top programs in the ACC, while UNC Wilmington was the front-runner in the CAA a year ago. With Logan Kline and Kaylea Arnett going one and two in the 1-meter made a really big difference today. The men were very solid. John Trope truly stepped up today and did a beautiful job in the 3-meter. Overall, I am very happy with our progress this season and today was really exciting.”
Tech returns to the water Friday, Nov. 4 when it travels to Columbus, Ohio to take on Ohio State, Cleveland State and Denison at 6 p.m.
For updates on Virginia Tech swimming & diving, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_SwimDive).