UW- Eau Claire swim team starts the season with a victory

    The Blugolds defeated UW- Oshkosh in their weekend meet

    Macey VanDenMeerendonk

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    UW- Eau Claire swim team defeated UW- Oshkosh in last weekends meet.

    The UW- Eau Claire swim team came together for a victory at their first meet of the season this past Saturday. The Blugolds took down UW- Oshkosh on the road, with a final score of 157-79 for the women’s team and 170-56 for the men’s.

    The women’s team fell to Mankato State University in a dual last Friday night, but came out on top against Oshkosh. Jessica Short, a junior, said Mankato is always a tough competitor because they are Division II, but is proud of how the team worked together on Saturday.

    “I think it was a really good start for the men’s team and the women’s team coming together on Saturday for Oshkosh,” Short said. “I think people surprised themselves with how fast they swam. Usually you don’t see that till later in the season.”

    Head Coach Annie Ryder said she was happy with the results of the team’s efforts.

    “I am very pleased with how our team performed today,”Ryder said. “For the men it was their first dual meet of the season and they posted some great times, especially this early in the season. I was happy with the intensity in which they raced today. The women came off a tough dual last night and swam hard today posting some really nice swims. It was nice watching them swim hard and racing.”

    Overall, the women won 10 events with the men claiming 11, beating the Titans in the vast majority of their races.

    Assistant Coach Nick Hora said he was pleased with how hard the team has worked thus far.

    “Up until this point, this season has been going really well,” Hora said. “I was really happy with how people have been practicing and there has been a lot of positivity.”

    The women’s 200-yard Medley Relay, completed by Short, Emily Ries, a first-year competitor, Anna Egli, a first-year competitor, and Brittany Farr, a junior, won the event with a time of 1:55.98. The men also won this race, completed by Nicholas Meints, a sophomore, Collin Miller, a sophomore, Conner Pendill, a sophomore, and Logan Coert, a senior, in a time of 1:39.70.

    “I think as a team, especially the guys side, we were really excited to have our first meet of the year,” Coert said. “The night before, the women’s team had a meet against Mankato and that got us pumped up to swim against Oshkosh this weekend.”

    The team kept up with winning multiple races on both the women’s and men’s side of the competition. Anna Pagel, a first-year competitor, secured a victory in the women’s 1,000-yard freestyle with a time of 11:54.46. Kate Stensberg, a first-year competitor, finished on top in the women’s 200-yard freestyle with a time of 2:06.56.

    Ryan Wollschlager, a first-year competitor, won the men’s 1,000-yard freestyle with a time of 10:59.41. Meanwhile, Caleb Odmark, a junior, took the first place title in the men’s 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:53.57.

    Both the women’s and men’s teams won the 200-yard freestyle relay. Short, Farr, Jessica Wilson, a first-year competitor, and Ries touched first for the women with a time of 1:45.12. The victorious men’s relay was completed by Jack Kelly, a senior, Joseph Ackerson, a first-year competitor, Odmark and Coert with a time of 1:31.20.

    Coert said the team has big goals for the upcoming season. He said he hopes the win against Oshkosh will set the team up for a good meet next weekend against UW- Stevens Point.

    “Stevens Point is a tough team but it’s also great competition,” Coert said. “I think that it’s a really good opportunity to practice racing tough opponents and hopefully we can come out with a win this year. I think that win against Oshkosh is just putting fuel on the fire, right now we are setup to have a good week of practice. We’ll be ready for Stevens Point when they come to us.”