The swimming and diving teams cruised their way past a strong Colby squad last Saturday to claim the CBB Championship for the second year in a row.
"Colby always has a fairly strong team, although they seemed a little weaker this year than years past," said Nathan Mecray '12. "They are one of our biggest rivals so we use that as motivation to swim fast."
The Polar Bears proved to be up to the challenge, with both the men's and women's teams sweeping the competition. The women's team downed the Mules 171.5-128.5, while the men posted a 175-111 victory in what Head Coach Brad Burnham described as "an awesome weekend of racing."
"Colby was ready for us, but we responded beautifully," added Burnham.
The Polar Bear women, who won 12 out of 16 events, got the meet off to a strong start with a first place finish in the 200-yard medley relay. Erin McAuliffe '11, Caitlin Callahan '11, Emily Shoemaker '12, and Kaley Kokomoor '13 finished half a second ahead of the Colby "A" relay with a time of 1:54.44.
In individual events, Allen Garner '12 and Katherine Foley '13 led the women's team, winning three events apiece. Foley swept the middle and long-distance freestyle events, finishing first in the 200, 500, and 1000-yard races. Garner won the 100 and 200-yard backstroke as well as the 200-yard Individual Medley (IM).
Callahan and Jessie Small '12 dominated the 100-yard breastroke with respective first and second place finishes. Finally, Kokomoor won the 50-yard freestyle in a close race, beating out her opponent by 0.1 seconds. Shoemaker was 0.05 seconds behind in third place.
Mecray led the men's team, winning the 100-yard breastroke and 100-yard freestyle. His time of 58.22 in the 100 breastroke set a new Colby pool record. Mecray's performances at the meet earned him NESCAC Men's Swimmer of the Week honors.
"I focused on going out fast and getting a good lead," said Mecray. "I just tried to hang on at the end of the race."
Basyl Stuyvesant '13, Mac Routh '12 and Zach Perez '12 also contributed to the men's victory, with each swimmer winning a pair of events. Stuyvesant won the 100 and 200-yard backstroke, while Routh swept the 50-yard freestyle and the 100-yard butterfly. Perez finished first in the 200-yard breastroke and the 200-yard IM.
Bowdoin divers rounded out the successes of the meet, winning all four springboard events and contributing a total of 54 points to the men's and women's final scores. Mae Speight '13 finished in first on the 3-meter, and Ginger Leone '11 won the 1-meter with a score of 172.45
"My back 1.5 twister is usually my highest scoring dive; that and my back 1.5 somersault went well at the meet," said Leone. "What helps me the most on 1-meter, though, is that my dives are fairly consistent."
Sophomores Daniel Jeong and Kevin Kowalko, benefiting from Colby's lack of a male diving squad, handily won the 1 and 3-meter boards. Both divers now look to qualify for the NESCAC Championship with a full list of eleven dives.
The Polar Bears now enter their end-of-season taper period to prepare for the upcoming NESCAC Championships at the end of February. The women will compete February 19-21 at Middlebury, and the men will take to the pool the following weekend of February 26-28 at Williams.