Swimming & Diving Defeats Union by 100+ Points


On the road last Saturday, the swimming and diving teams conquered Union by an overwhelming 194-87 on the women’s side and 190-76 on the men’s side. 

The women’s team beat Union to the wall in 11 out of the 15 events that day. The 200 medley relay quartet of Frances Vandermeer ’20, Erin Kelly ’21, Maddie McKean ’22 and Audrey Hsi ’22 started the meet with a winning time of 1:52.73. The four competitors also collected individual wins in their respective events. Vandermeer claimed the 100 backstroke (1:00.41) and 100 freestyle (55.27). In the 100 breastroke, Kelly triumphed with a 1:11.38. Hsi sprinted to first in the 50 freestyle, swimming 25.74. Finally, McKean flew through the 100 butterfly to win in 1:00.94. 

Other top scoring finishes came from Jessica Lipton ’20 in the 200 butterfly (2:18.16), Hannah Wander ’22 in the 200 breaststroke (2:35.12), Georgia Houde ’20 in the 500 freestyle (5:23.73), and Grace Stimson ’19 in the 200 individual medley (2:14.79). 

To end the successful day, the 200 free relay squad of Courtney Gantt ’22, Erin Kelly, Audrey Kelly ’21 and McKean stopped the clock at 1:42.58, beating Union by several seconds. 

 The men’s side saw similar results, dominating 12 out of the 15 events. The 200-meter medley relay team of Brendan Leech ’19, Bryan Chang ’22, Will Pannos ’20 and Jake Gaughan ’22 won in 1:40.75, immediately putting Middlebury ahead of the Dutchmen. From there, the Panthers kept building momentum. 

Morgan Matsuda ’19 totaled three wins in the 200 freestyle (1:47.89), 200 breaststroke (2:13.79), and 200 individual medley (2:02.33), while Corey Jalbert ’21 out-touched the rest of the pool in both the 50 free (22.30) and 100 free (49.44). 

Four other swimmers also claimed their individual events: Leech in the 100 backstroke (54.56), Cody Kim ’22 in the 100 breaststroke (1:02.07), Kevin Santoro ’21 in the 200 backstroke (2:01.80) and Aska Matsuda ’22 in the 500 free (4:53.01). Diver Mike Chirico ’20 was victorious in the three-meter event, scoring 270.98 points. 

The 200 free relay team of Keegan Pando ’21, Alex Corda ’20, Leech and Gaughan earned the final points of the day, capping off the meet with a 1:29.72 win.  

Before the championship season begins, the Panthers look to secure a couple more wins and fine tune technique. “We’re trying to mimic races in practice and make ourselves feel fast,” Leech said. 

“We’re really hoping to move up at the end-of-season NESCAC meet. Looking ahead, we’re really focused on getting strong times to feel good about heading into NESCACs. We have a very large class of first-years who have been working hard all season, and we’re excited to see what we can do at the end of the season,” he continued. 

The Panthers return to the Natatorium this weekend, where they will host Hamilton and Williams in their final dual meets of the season.