The ten Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference teams concluded the final day of the 2016 Men’s & Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships at the Burt Flickinger Athletic Center in Buffalo, New York. The Rider University men claimed their fifth consecutive MAAC Championship title, while the Marist College women won their sixth consecutive title. Both teams sat in first place from the first day all the way through the final session.
Rider University’s men sat on top of the leader board for the entire four day event, finishing with 906.5 points. Marist College stood strong in second place and finished with 589.5 points. Bryant University was third with 511 points, followed by Canisius College (432.5), Iona College (431), Niagara University (367), Fairfield University (210), Manhattan College (205.5), and Monmouth University (72).
Rider University continued to dominate the relays by winning their fifth title of the meet in record-breaking fashion. Martir, W. Molloy, Gibbons, and Z. Molloy ended the meet victorious in the 400-yard medley relay, posting a time of 2:59.69. The Broncs also won four out of the five individual swimming events this evening. These MAAC Champions include Sam Cramer (1650 freestyle), Luke Musselman (200 backstroke), Zachary Molloy (100 freestyle), and Griff Hutton (200 butterfly). Sophomore Zachary Molloy was named Most Outstanding Male Swimmer after winning three gold medals in the 100, 200, and 500-yard freestyle events. His accolades for the week also include an NCAA ‘B’ cut and MAAC record in the 200-yard freestyle as well as three more MAAC records in three different relay events. To cap off a stellar week, head coach Steve Fletcher was voted the 2016 Men’s Swimming Coach of the Year.
Bryant University’s Ben Schulte was the only other men’s swimmer to win all of his individual events. In the final session, Schulte recorded a 2:00.23 in the 200-yard breaststroke as he finished more than three seconds ahead of the second place finisher. Canisius College’s Travis Wright was successful on the diving boards, leading him to win Most Outstanding Male Diver. He recorded a final score of 314.00 on 1-M and 347.05 on 3-M.
On the women’s side, Marist recorded 976 points, while on their way to their sixth consecutive title. Rider secured second place with 530, followed by Canisius College (518), Iona College (433), Siena College (422), Fairfield University (351), Niagara University (233), Manhattan College (166), and Monmouth University (97).
The Red Foxes won all six women’s events for the evening. The five individual MAAC Champions include Sara Nestrowitz (1650 freestyle), Bethany Powhida (200 backstroke), Meredith Wurtz (100 freestyle), Isabella Morreale (200 breaststroke), and Daniela Gomez (200 butterfly). Georgia Goldman, Bridget Curley, Bethany Powhida, and Meredith Wurtz won the 400-yard freestyle relay for the Red Foxes for the second year in a row. Their time of 3:27.63 was half a second faster than in 2015. Junior Meredith Wurtz won Most Outstanding Female Swimmer after winning the 50, 100, and 200-yard freestyle events. Teammate Megan Berardelli won Most Outstanding Female Diver after recording two top two finishes. Berardelli finished first on 3-M with a score of 296.95 and second on 1-M behind teammate Renata Diotalevi with a score of 254.00.
Larry VanWagner was voted the 2016 Women’s Swimming Coach of the Year, while Melanie Bostad won Diving Coach of the Year.
MAAC contributed this report.