Penn swimming handles West Chester and La Salle in emotional weekend

Red and Blue earn key win in annual Senior Meet

· February 2, 2014, 7:15 pm   ·  Updated February 2, 2014, 11:46 pm

It was just about the best weekend that the Quakers could have hoped for.

In their last two meets together of the year in their home pool, the Penn men’s and women’s swimming teams both picked up wins against West Chester and La Salle in what was both a successful and emotional weekend.

Penn kicked off its back-to-back days of competition in winning fashion, as both teams soundly defeated West Chester on Friday. On the men’s side, the Quakers tallied 11 event victories en route to routing the Golden Rams, 182-113.

Sophomore Chris Swanson took first in the men’s 1000-meter free, touching up in a time of 9:24.90, and junior Alex Porter claimed first in both the 100 and 200 butterfly.

Senior Rhoads Worster also had an impressive day for the Quakers. Worster took first in the 100 back and then swam anchor for the 200 free relay team, which broke a Sheerr Pool record by posting a new time of 1:22.05 in the last event of the night.

“We are at the point of the year right now where we are just trying to prepare ourselves going into conferences,” Worster said. “Any time we can come out here and race some quality opponents and put down some great times is always important. We did really well tonight.”

Not to be outdone that night, the woman’s team also posted some great times as they won, 169-120.

Freshman Rochelle Dong won yet another 50 free event, touching up in 23.71. The freshman was also part of the women’s 200 free relay team who broke a pool record.

The evening’s other highlight was senior Shelby Fortin and her record breaking individual performance in the 500 freestyle. Fortin won the event in a time of 4:51.96, breaking the pool record. Fortin now owns both the varsity record and the pool record for that distance.

“I’ve wanted that record since freshman year,” Fortin said. “Coming out here on one of my last nights and breaking it was just amazing.”

Saturday’s race against La Salle yielded many of the same results as Friday’s, as the Quakers picked up two more wins against the Explorers, 162-122 for the men and 159-129 for the women. More importantly, Saturday was also senior day for Penn, and in one of their last races in the Sheer Pool, the seniors in both programs did not disappoint.

Both Fortin and Worster claimed victories for Penn. Fortin’s came in the 200 free and Worster’s in the 100 butterfly. Senior Kristi Edleson won the 1000 free in a time of 10:21.25, and senior Will Hartje continued his excellent diving season, winning the three-meter dive with a score of 294.22.

“We’ve had a really good year ourselves,” Hartje said of the dive team’s overall performance. “We’ve been able to go 1-2 or 1-3 in most meets, and especially in tight competitions, those points can be big.”

In addition to the stellar individual performances by the seniors, Penn also had a great day in the relay races.

The woman’s 200 free relay team broke the record they had set only hours prior and uprooted its own time, finishing in 1:36.06. In addition, both men’s and woman’s teams posted commanding victories in the 200 medley relay to start off the meet, which set the tone for the rest of the events to come.

While this was by no means their last race for the ten seniors, it was still an emotional day for both teams and one which they will be unlikely to forget.

“I remember back when I was a freshman, coach Schnur talked about how he wanted to really try and build the program around our year,” Fortin said. “We have a great class, and I’m really happy I got to go out there and be with this group one more time.”

SEE ALSO

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Dong comes out of her shell for Penn swimming

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