On Sunday, December 5, the Monmouth University men’s and women’s swimming teams finished their semester with strong performances at the 2021 ECAC Winter Championship at the Nassau County Aquatic Center in East Meadow, New York.
Out of eight competing teams, the men’s team finished in third place. Out of 12 teams, the women placed fourth overall. At the meet, a total of 13 team records fell for Monmouth in addition to the Hawks achieving four first-place finishes. Adding to their successful performance, Monmouth set two ECAC Championship records.
Competing in the meet were schools including Columbia, UMBC, Saint Peter’s, LIU, Saint Francis Brooklyn, and Wagner. Other teams included St. Joseph’s College Long Island, Baruch, Salem, Adelphi, and Stonehill.
The competition was broken down over three days from Friday to Sunday. On Friday, junior Alexandra Ho broke the ECAC record. Then, with her first-place finish in the 50-yard freestyle, she broke Monmouth’s program record hitting the wall in 23.16. For Ho, this was her ninth winning effort of her season. It was also the 25th of her career.
Freshman Georgia Watkins placed third in the 500 freestyle, breaking Monmouth’s record. Her time was 4:57 .27 which was 10 seconds better than the previous school record.
Also on Friday, Monmouth’s women’s 400-yard medley relay team not only placed fourth but broke a school record. The triumph was all thanks to junior Tahlia Botha, senior Camryn McHugh, Georgia Watkins, and Alexandra Ho. Overall, they clocked in at 3:50:00 and their record-breaking time was over two seconds faster than Monmouth’s previous record.
As for the men’s 400-yard medley relay team, they finished in second place. The boys achieved their finish all thanks to senior Callan Smith, sophomore Sean Cook, junior Blake Reynolds, and junior Thomas From. The team finished in 3:21.56.
The Hawks men’s team also placed third in the 200 free relay due to solid performances from Blake Reynolds, senior Dylan Barkhuizen, Thomas From, and senior Kevin Del Giorno. They finished in 1:23.72.
The next day, there was something truly in the water as the Hawks could not stop dominating. The women’s 200-yard medley relay team broke the Monmouth record finishing in fourth place in 1:43.96. Competing was Camryn McHugh, Tahlia Botha, Georgia Watkins, and Alexandra Ho. Their time was two seconds faster than the previous Monmouth record which was set in 2019.
Placing third, was the women’s 800-yard freestyle relay team who set another school record. The team finished with a time of 7:39.05. The men aced their race as well finishing with a time of 6:50.44. Individually, Camryn McHugh placed third in the 100 back stroke hitting the wall in 55.98.
Smith, Cook, Reynolds, and Barkhuizen took third in the 200-medley relay finishing in 1:31.46. Multiple Monmouth swimmers then swam in the ‘A’ Finals Saturday night. Cole Dyson competed in the 400-individual medley, Camryn McHugh competed in the 100 fly and 100 back, Tahlia Botha and Sean Cook in the 100 breast, and Callan Smith and Sam Poching in the 100 back.
Sunday rolled around and the Hawks just kept rolling. Georgia Watkins earned her fifth individual school record placing third in the 1650 free. Adding to the breaking of records was Cole Dyson who broke the Monmouth school record in the 1650 free with a time of 15:54.54.
Ho won the 100 free breaking her own school record with a time of 51.18. Smith won the 200 back setting the ECAC record with a time of 1:47.11. The women’s 400-yard freestyle relay broke the Monmouth record with a time of 3:30.11 and the men finished in third with a time of 3:04.04.
The swim teams next competition is set for January 14 with the women’s team facing Sacred Heart and the men facing NJIT in Newark.