December 4, 2008

Cornell Swimmers Prep for Short Trip to Binghamton

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The men’s and women’s aquatic teams will head to central New York rival Binghamton this weekend for the Red’s first dual meet of the season. Both squads incurred tough losses last weekend, especially for a men’s team that had a chance to beat Penn.
This weekend should prove to be fruitful for both teams, however.
[img_assist|nid=34006|title=Bing, bang, boom|desc=After beating Binghamton a year ago (above), 175-114, the men’s swimming team will now face the Bearcats again on their home territory.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
“Binghamton has definitely been getting better over the years and really shaving down their times,” said sophomore Kathleen Hohwald, “so it should be a good meet for us. We really need to just keep swimming at our personal bests.”
In the mid-major poll by, the men’s team was ranked second compared to Binghamton’s 13th. By the numbers, this shouldn’t be very close. If anything the team is training right through this meet in order to continue building up their speed and shaving their times.
“I guess it’s a good opportunity to play up our lineup a little bit and let some of the guys try new events and see what they can do,” said senior captain Wes Newman.
The key to any victory in swimming is top-5 finishes. In the Red’s first Ivy meet this year, against Harvard and Dartmouth, Cornell was able to take 16 top-5 finishes. In their meet two weeks ago against Penn and Princeton the team picked up eight. The team wasn’t able to win either meet against either opponent, but did see improved times in both meets.
“We’re really training hard doing about 15,000 yards a day looking to really be in great shape coming into the second half of the season where we can taper well and break out at championships,” Hohwald said.
While many of students are leaving Cornell and going home for break, the swimming and diving teams are intending to do some heavy training. If anything, Christmas and New Years may present the only breaks in what is the most intense part of their season. The teams will be back in early January before the semester begins for three dual meets.
“We will be training two practices a day in Puerto Rico to get in shape for the second half of the season,” Newman said, “We’ll be home for about seven days, but we’re going to up the volume and put in some really hard practices in Puerto Rico right before Navy”.
Both of these teams have not gotten off to a great start. The Binghamton meet may be important to turning around the feeling of the team going into its early January contests.
“Sadie Ellison, Heather Miller [and] Emily Dean have been performing really well,” Hohwald said. “There isn’t any one person on the team really standing out, we’re all really standing on the same playing field and performing better each week.”
In these waning days of the semester both teams are pushing their training schedules in order to compete at a high level during the opening days of 2009. If anything both of these teams are looking towards their respective championship meets in February. Up until then, the hopes are to train as hard as possible and shave as much time down on each individual’s swims in order to break out at championships.