Editorial content for the 2018 NCAA DIII Championship coverage is sponsored by TritonWear. Visit TritonWear.com for more information on our sponsor.
The final weekend of duel meets in Division III swimming will be this weekend as we hit February and are officially seven weeks away from the NCAA Championships.
“You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here.” Well actually, you can still stay here, because conference season is just around the corner. In fact, many teams will be tapering for their conference meets the weekend after this one. Duel meets are coming to an end this weekend, but taper is just heating up.
On this last duel meet weekend, keep an eye on some last minute pushes by some of the lower level swimmers to try and make their respective conference squads, as well as any late bloomers that are starting to feel a little better in the water.
(#4/8) MIT is hosting (#11/10) Amherst in an east coast battle. MIT (NEWMAC) and Amherst (NESCAC) are in separate conferences and will be swimming each other before their big meets in two weeks. MIT will swim in the NEWMAC championships in three weeks while the Amherst men will have their conference meet that weekend as well since their conference is split co-ed with the women swimming the week before.
The women’s meet between these two teams figures to be a closer affair as MIT is 8th and Amherst is 10th in the polls, so it could come down to the last relay if both teams are in the mood to fight and not be stuck in the taper blues. This should be a big deal for both teams as they usually finish off their regular seasons by facing each other, despite being in separate conferences.
Amherst’s Bridgitte Kwong and MIT’s Kailey Allen swim different events but will need to swim big if their team will come out with a win. They are the main keys to their team’s success, along with everyone else contributing.
(#25/13) Calvin will be hosting in-state (NR/25) Hope College on Saturday where the women will be swimming in another top 25 matchup. Calvin has Abby Van Harn as one of the contenders in the sprint freestyle events at NCAA’s in about seven weeks. If Hope will pull the upset, they will need everything out of Chloe Palajac and also capitalize on Calvin’s weaknesses, which is breaststroke and backstroke.
Emory will be facing its second straight Division I team where they will face in-state Georgia on Saturday in Athens. The Bulldogs have already had their senior day so it is likely they will not be swimming their top guns as they face the defending Division III NCAA champions.
Denison will also be hosting Ohio Wesleyan on Saturday and (#10/15) Pomona Pitzer will host California Lutheran and Cal Tech. (#6/5) NYU will host the NYU Invitational with a variety of New York colleges coming in attendance, as (NR/21) SUNY Geneseo will be hosting its own invitational in New York as well.