With a little over two months of play left to go for most teams, the winter sports season is picking up right where it left off before break. Here is all you need to know to get caught up on what's happened so far … and what the Quakers have left.
Men’s swimming and diving
Aside from not-so-impressive records, men’s swimming (2-2-1) and diving just finished wrapping up a record-breaking Zippy Invitational performance, and the program shows promise of bringing home a NCAA championship down the road. The men’s team secured its second straight first-place finish at Zippy, held in Akron, Ohio in early December.
As swimming and diving resumes its season after a six-week hiatus, there is one key figure to keep an eye on. Having secured a spot on the U.S. Men’s National Team earlier in the season, it is no shock sophomore Matt Fallon leads the men’s team in impressive performances and has already qualified for the 2023 NCAA Championship.
Women's swimming and diving
The women's team also finished the fall season on a high note, coming in third place at the Zippy Invitational, but the team still has a 2-3 record.
For the women’s squad, it is senior Anna Kalandadze who has made the most waves in the pool thus far, winning the Zippy Invitational's 500-yard freestyle, with an NCAA B-cut time of 4:42.45.
In spite of this, before planning for the NCAA Championship can begin, the Ivy League Championship awaits both teams in February — where the women finished in third place in 2022.
In a case of déjà vu, Penn men’s squash finds itself undefeated at the midway point. Holding a 8-0 record before setting off on a month-long winter break, the team is looking to repeat as Ivy champs — winning an outright title for the first time since 1969 last season.
The men’s squad is also hungrier than ever for a Potter Cup victory after falling just short last season to Harvard in the championship round — who also stands a spot above Penn in national rankings at first place.
Penn women’s squash has only dropped one of its matches this season — to No. 3 Drexel on Nov. 13 — and currently stands at a 4-1 recond. The Quakers have impressive sweeps their last time out and sitting at ninth in national rankings, the team looks to improve on its poor 2-4 finish in conference play last season when Ancient Eight play commences on Jan. 13.
After starting the season with three losses to ranked teams, Penn wrestling took the winter break to rebound, with head-to-head defeats of Army and UNC wrapped around a second place finish at the Midlands Championships in Evanston, Ill. and fifth place at the Franklin & Marshall Open. With the thick of the season still to come, the team stands at 2-3, but has reasons for optimism.
Despite the losing record, Penn's season has been littered with impressive individual performances. In fact, nine Quakers were nationally ranked at one time with sophomore Nick Incontrera shining the brightest. Incontrera picked up a couple of wins in previous matchups with nationally ranked opponents such as No. 19 Rutgers and No. 9 Wisconsin.
With multiple ranked wins in the first part of the season, Penn men's fencing is off to a 4-1 start. The men earned a pair of top-10 wins at the Elite Invitational in November, including a decisive 18-9 defeat of UNC, which was ranked No. 6 in the country at the time. The program's only loss of the year was also at the Invitational, to No. 8 Notre Dame. Up next is the Penn State Invitational on Jan. 15 — a tournament where Penn went 2-2 last year.
With six matches in the books, Penn women's fencing is 4-2. At the Elite Invitational, hosted at the Tse Center in Philadelphia, the team snagged three victories against top-15 squads. So far, some of the team's most impressive fencers have been freshmen Elizabeth Wang and Lenna Choi, who have a combined 11-8 record.The women will also see their next action at the Penn State Invitational on Jan. 15.