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Men's And Women's Swimming Dominate U-Mass Dartmouth

By David Chatwin
Team Captain

On Tuesday, the men's and women's swim teams traveled to UMass-Dartmouth for their final away meet of the year. Coming off of a rigorous IAP training schedule and close meets against Wellesley College and Southern Connecticut State University, the swimmers were looking forward to a more relaxing competition. The Engineers showed their dominance by winning the opening relays and they never looked back, defeating the Corsairs handily.

The best performances of the meet came in the distance events with Ken McCracken '00, Corey Gerritsen '02, Kristen Clements '02 and Christina Wilbert '01 swimming season bests in the 400 yard individual medley. McCracken, who was the MVP of the meet for the men, swam the 500 yard freestyle in 5:08. For the women's 500, Clements turned in another great swim with a New England Championship qualifying time of 5:41. To complete the distance events, Kevin Musselwhite '99 demonstrated his increasing aptitude for the 1000 yard freestyle by winning the race with a time of 10:52.

One of the most exciting races of the day was the men's 200 yard freestyle with two of MIT's most promising freshmen, Grant Kristofek '02 and Nathan Janos '02, battling it out. Both finished with a time of 1:51, with the win going to Grant by a fraction a second.

MIT's divers also contributed to the victory, with veteran Dylan Birtolo '00 placing first in the men's competition and the rookie Dara Jeffries '02, diving in her first collegiate competition, coming in third for the women.

Continuing their season-long breaststroke dominance, the women's tag team of Lea Engst '02 and Erica Fuchs '99, once again placed first and second in the 200 yard breaststroke.

To punctuate the win the men's team swept the final 4x50 yard freestyle relay. All three teams from MIT finished far ahead of the pack and within one second of each other.

Coach Maryellen McLaughlin was pleased with the results of the competition. "It was a great win at this time of the year. The team was broken down because of the hard training that we have been doing. The swimmers were able to rise above that and had some outstanding performances," McLaughlin said.