NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- Before a capacity crowd, in the newly renovated Hynes Athletics Center Pool, the Iona College Men’s and Women’s Swim team opened up their home season with a pair of wins and pair of losses.
St. Francis College, Sacred Heart University and Wagner College visited New Rochelle for the Annual Iona Invitational. Wagner – a women’s only team - came away the big winner with a 196-39 win over SFC, a 166-74 win over SHU, and a 188-49 decision over Iona.
The Sacred Heart women topped SFC 155-61 and in the day’s closest meet, the Pioneers held off the Iona women in the day’s last race to win 112.5 to 105.5.
The Iona men cruised to an easy 135-68 win over St. Francis Brooklyn to raise its season mark to 3-0. With the one win and a pair of losses the Iona women drop to 2-3.
The Iona-SHU women’s meet was a back and forth contest with the Gaels starting strong, winning the 400-yard medley relay. Sophomore Jessica Schmidt, senior Katie Nevin, and juniors Alexandra DiBiase and Elizabeth Kaczmarek posted a half-second win over SHU at 4:07.80.
The 1000-yard freestyle saw junior Kaitlyn Mahon (10:55.62), sophomore Maria DiBella and freshman Anna Desiderio placed 1-2-3 to pull ahead of SHU early on. The Pioneers the swimming portion of the meet with 13-point cushion from the 1-M springboard diving.
The 200-free proved to be an early turning point for the women as Iona’s junior Alex Aliapoulios and SHU’s Kim Hylan tied for first at 2:00.35, with Kaczmarek third.
The 500-free saw pioneer freshman Lauren Somers touch the wall first in at 24.19, with Iona freshman Aly Chain second at 24.59.
The 200-IM was won by Schmidt, who held off Sacred Heart’s Jessica Poole by .01 at 2:16.93. The 200-butterfly allowed Iona to extend its lead to 11 points with Freshman Amanda Agostino and DiBiase going 1-2 at 2:16.03 and 2:16.78, respectively.
The Pioneers struck back with Somers (52.42) and Caleigh Dion (54.57) taking first and second in the 100-backstroke ahead of Chain and Aliapoulios. They then backed it with another 1-2 effort in the 200-back with Hylan (2:12.55) and Anna Brown (2:14.93) upending DiBella and junior Kendall Magill.
Iona’s 500-free trio of Mahon (5:24.45), Desiderio (5:32.99) and sophomore Demetra Laurent (5:33.15) took the top three spots to pull the Gaels even. However, Sarced Heart once again reacted in the 200-breaststroke with a 1-2-3 effort of their own with Poole (2:32.89), Sarah Hensal (2:37.89) and Julia Pusateri (2:38.00) touching out Agostino and freshman Ashley Cave, for a two point lead going into final race.
The Iona 400-Free Relay with Schmidt, Chain, Aliapoulios and Nevin held the lead at the halfway mark, but a strong back half by SHU’s Olivia Decas (54.98) and Somers (51.56) gave SHU the 3.4 second win at 3:35.25 to 3:38.61.
The Iona men were in control from the opening 400-medley Relay with sophomore Matt Bosse, junior Sam Braziel, senior Keegan Boisson-Yates and sophomore Jimmy Barnola winning at 3:38.18. Sophomore Owen Badin (10:27.82) and freshman James Whaley (10:30.62) grabbed a two-three placement in the 1000-free.
The 200-free highlighted junior Kyle Desrosiers and Boisson-Yates taking one and two with respective times of 1:49.27 and 1:49.33. Juniors Zack Holbrook and Christian Foti, along with freshman Jakub Korek placed 2-3-4 in the 50-free at 22.41, 22.75 and 23.14 respectively.
Freshman Matthew Anderson and Braziel went 1-2 in the 200-IM at 2:04.32 and 2:06.45, respectively.
Whaley picked up his first collegiate career win in the 200-fly at 2:05.74, with teammate senior Brendan Chan close behind at 2:06.08. Holbrook gained the win in the 100-free at 49.09; and, Bosse took the 200-Back at 2:02.56.
The 500-Free saw Foti and Anderson battle for the 20-lengths with the junior touching the wall first by .01 at 4:48.08 to 4:48.09. Barnola grabbed third at 4:59.48.
Junior Chris Vadala and Korek went one-two in the 200-breast at 2:14.80 and 2:21.47, respectively.
Sophomore Jude Zamora, Holbrook, Boisson-Yates and Foti had the day’s top time in the 400-Free Relay at 3:17.61.
“We saw a lot of progress today and the crowd was great. We still have work to do in some areas and we know we have a big challenge next week with Bryant University coming to Hynes and we will have to be ready,” commented head coach Nick Cavataro.