Swim & Dive Looks Toward Fall Classic

Beginning on Friday, the swim & dive teams will compete in and host the annual Phoenix Fall Classic, which will bring teams from all over the Midwest.

By Brinda Rao

This weekend, UChicago’s swim and dive teams will host the annual Phoenix Fall Classic. The Classic is a three-day meet with teams from all over the Midwest invited. Last year, both UChicago teams dominated the meet, winning with over 1,000 points each. With an excellent start to the official season, both teams plan to make qualifying times and places at the Classic this weekend. The Classic is their last meet before a two-month hiatus for finals and winter break. 

The men’s team competed well at last weekend’s meet, placing second to Wash U. Third-year Taye Baldinazzo placed first in the individual 200-yard freestyle. The men’s swim and dive team has high expectations for this weekend’s meet and hopes to bring home a victory.

The women’s team defeated some of their toughest competition, Wash U and Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, at last weekend’s meet. Two first-years, as well as third-year Agnes Lo, swam provisional qualifying times. In addition, Lo performed a record-breaking dive of 302.80. The successful meet showed both members of the team and their competition that the first-year girls have a lot of potential. First-year Hannah Subramaniam said, “Last weekend’s meet gave people some confidence going into this weekend, which is our biggest meet so far. Showed the freshmen they have a lot potential.”

Practice this week has pulled back from its usual high yardage. While increasing intensity, swimmers are preparing for their races. They were instructed to lift 50–70 percent of their max. After training for over two months, the team is energized and ready to give its final meet of the 2018 half of their season everything. Focusing on intensity over yardage has put the swimmers and divers in a good place for this weekend’s meet. 

The swim and dive teams have high expectations for the Phoenix Classic. Baldinazzo said, “As long as we all swim confidently, and stick to our fundamentals, I’m sure we’ll put up some impressive times.” With the official season having started, members need to start making qualifying times to advance further in the season. Swimmers have their eyes on making times for the regional and national meets later in the year. First-year Alice Ye said, “The team as a whole is looking for a win as well as some NCAA cuts. I hope to get some season bests.”

The Phoenix Classic is the teams’ last meet before their season resumes on January 18. The teams hope to perform well and receive NCAA qualifying times early in the season. The UChicago swim and dive teams will host the meet at the Myers-McLoraine Pool starting at 6 p.m. on Friday. Be sure to come out and cheer them on at the last meet before their winter break.