Feb. 14, 2012
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Navy's Lejeune Hall will serve as the host for this year's Patriot League Swimming and Diving Championship, which begins Thursday and runs through Saturday. The session of swimming trials will begin daily at 10:30 a.m., diving trials will start each afternoon at 12:30 p.m. and the finals for both the swimming and diving events will start nightly at 6 p.m.
Links to live results from the championship can be found at NavySports.com. Additionally, a live video stream of every session will be available to subscribers of either Navy All-Access or Patriot League All-Access. A one-month subscription to Navy All-Access costs $9.95. Instructions on how to register or sign-in can be found at NavySports.com.
Vehicles without Department of Defense stickers will not be allowed access to the Naval Academy grounds. All other fans are advised to park at nearby Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium ($5. per vehicle) and ride the free shuttle bus to and from the USNA. Buses will run every 15-20 minutes. The shuttle will run Thursday and Friday from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-10 p.m., with Saturday's shuttle running from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-11 p.m.
Tickets, which are available in advance through either the Navy Ticket Office (1-800-US4-NAVY) or by visiting NavySports.com, are $8 for each session of swimming / diving trials, $10 for each session of finals and $35 for an all-session pass.
The Navy women's team won the program's league-best 10th title two years ago when the championship was last held in Lejeune Hall. The Mids have won four titles and placed second once in the previous seven times Navy has played host to the championship.
Navy placed second by 102 points to Colgate at the 2011 league meet that was held at Bucknell. The showing gave the Mids three second-place finishes and two first-place efforts over the last five championship meets.
"We're excited about the opportunity to compete for a league championship in our own pool," said Navy women's swimming head coach John Morrison. "We feel we will be right in the mix among the teams that will contend for the team title, but to do so we will need to have an outstanding effort from everyone. As we have learned in the past, every point is huge. Our depth is going to have to come through for us."
The Mids won two relay races and three individual events on their way to tallying 760 points at last year's meet. Highlighting the returning swimmers for Navy from last season's meet are Laura Gorinski
(Jr., Greensburg, Pa.) and Rheanna Vaughn
(So., Aliso Viejo, Calif.). Gorinski won both breaststroke events a year ago, while Vaughn won the 200 fly at the 2011 championship. That duo joined teammates Kellie Darmody
(Jr., Charlotte, N.C.) and Toni Paruso
(Jr., Savannah, Ga.) in earning First-Team All-Patriot League honors last season. Navy's returning second-team all-league honorees are Colleen Randolph
(So., Annapolis, Md.), Courtney Vandament
(Sr., Coppell, Texas), Jenn Abbott
(So., Wilton, Conn.), Haley Nowak
(So., Manassas, Va.), Lauren Baguley
(So., Hudsonville, Mich.) and Jordyn Nicholl
(Jr., Acworth, Ga.).
Navy has posted the fastest times in the league this fall in all five relay events and in 10 of the 13 individual events that will be contested during the championship. Gorinski alone has posted the fastest time of any swimmer in the Patriot League this season in both breaststroke and both individual medley events (a swimmer can compete in no more than three individual events at the meet). Completing the list of Mids who have posted the fastest time in an event this year are Paruso in the 100 fly, Vaughn in the 200 fly, Ange Sawick (Fr., Abingdon, Pa.) in the 500 free, Hollis Capuano (Jr., Wallingford, Conn.) in the 200 free and Darmody in both backstroke events.
The Navy men's team will be attempting to win the program's ninth Patriot League title in as many years of competing at the event. The Mids won 17 of the 20 events at the 2011 championship to accrue a league record 1,056 points and win the crown by over 450 points.
"It is conference championship time across the NCAA," said Navy men's swimming head coach Bill Roberts. "This is the time and these are the meets we all look forward to throughout the entire season. We expect this to be another exciting run of meets as we look to keep pace with the rest of Division I swimming and diving, including the Patriot League, beginning this week."
Included among the returning Mids who won an individual event last year are Mac Anthony (Sr., Allentown, Pa.), who won the 200 backstroke, 200 freestyle and 500 free races to earn swimmer-of-the-meet honors, and Zach Ingold (So., Hornell, N.Y.), who was tabbed as the league's rookie of the meet after winning the 100 backstroke, 50 freestyle and 100 free titles. Additionally for Navy, Ben Bondurant (Jr., Atlanta, Ga.) won the 200 individual medley crown, Luke Hoffer (So., Chapel Hill, N.C.) recorded the win in the 100 breaststroke race, Justin Vagts (Jr., Crofton, Md.) won the 1650 freestyle title and Mark Meyer (Sr., Bethesda, Md.) won the 200 fly event.
Navy also returns Will Norton (Sr., Tyler, Texas), Steve Dukleth (Sr., Glen Ellyn, Ill.) and Robbie Parker (Jr., Vienna, Va.), all of whom earned first-team all-league honors last year, along with 2011 second-team performers Conor Campbell (So., Manassas, Va.), Joseph Stark (Jr., Erie, Pa.), K.C. Linn (Sr., Newhall, Calif.) and Sean Murphy (So., Hudson, Ohio).
Just as on the women's side, members of the Navy men's team have posted the fastest times this season in each of the five relay events and in 10 of the 13 individual swimming events. The lone Mid with the fastest time in multiple events is Anthony, who leads all swimmers with his times in the 200 free and 500 free events. The list of other Mids to head the psych sheet are Parker, 50 free; Murphy, 100 breast; Gage Trotter (So., Conroe, Texas), 100 back; Vagts, 1650 free; Campbell, 200 back; Ingold, 100 free; Hoffer, 200 breast; and Meyer, 200 fly.