The women's swim team before an event earlier this year. Photo/ Harlan Drakes.

The women’s swimming and diving team claimed three victories in three days against Kean University, Montclair State University and William Paterson University, earning Head Coach Elise Blaschke’s first wins as head of the program. 

The Profs showed their dominance as the top-ranked team in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) with their convincing, large-margin sweep over their conference opponents outscoring them 490-196 in total.

Against Kean University, the Profs rallied to an impressive 134-50 point victory, winning all 11 events and headlined by a solid performance by senior Alex Bambrick who won the 400 individual medley in a time of 4:49. 

“I’m performing a lot better than I thought I was going to be. I’m at a much better place this year than I was last year. I’m going at a lot of faster times, and I’m feeling pretty good for this season,” Bambrick said. “With the new coach that I’m doing distance, she is training me well and I’m happy about it.” 

The team had another reason to celebrate. 

Blaschke earned her first career win and presumably anticipated it knowing how special and talented her squad is. 

“It was cool … when we looked at the lineups, we knew what we were going up against. And we knew it was going in our favor. It wasn’t a huge shock, but it was still fun and exciting,” Blaschke said. “Something I will remember.” 

Bambrick was ecstatic her performances contributed to the team’s success against Kean and Blaschke’s first team win. 

“It was awesome. I was excited to hear that Elise was going to be the head coach and I had a lot of excitement for her and the team,” Bambrick said. 

The next day, with barely any rest, the Profs managed to ease past Montclair State University with another dominant 226-71 victory. 

The team racked up first-place victories in 14 individual events and two relays. Abigail Brous, Emily Kopchick, Daria Mnich and Jordan McChesney won the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:48.70.  Elizabeth O’Brien, Brous, Kylie Salerno and McChesney finished in first place in the 400 freestyle relay with a time of 3:44.81. 

On their last meet in the three-day stretch, the Profs beat William Paterson University 130-75.  

As the team completed their three consecutive meets, Bambrick and Blaschke understand the team’s potential and their ability to reach prominence at the national level.

“It is amazing, honestly. The past four years have been such an improvement. My freshman year, we were pretty good, but each year, I have been able to see us progress and advance,” Bambrick said. “This year, we are blowing everyone out of the water, especially with the times we are hitting.” 

Blaschke shared a similar approach to Bambrick. 

“They rose to the occasion and did exactly what I needed them to do.  I definitely saw where they are, in terms of depth on the team … they did such a good job, they’re making my job a little more difficult in that regard [on the decision of which swimmers will travel to meet days],” Blaschke said.  

As the restless Profs competed throughout the three meets, one being a two and half hour ride to Wayne, New Jersey, the team showed no indication of exhaustion.

They demonstrated their efficient recovery to prepare them for their next meet. 

“In terms of recovery, I think that they know they have to fuel their body well, stay hydrated, and just been getting enough sleep in between each competition,” Blaschke said. 

The coaches didn’t schedule three meets in three days by accident.

“Our mid-season and end-of-year championship are three-day meets where they swim morning and evening,” Blaschke said. “It gets them into the routine for a three-day meet, and also allows them to know what it’s going to feel like on the third.” 

With three straight NJAC victories, the Brown and Gold take full command in the conference standings yet again with an overall record of 3-1, ahead of second-placed The College of New Jersey, 2-0.  

Rowan will attempt to extend their winning streak to four as the Profs host Ramapo College for another NJAC showdown this upcoming Saturday at 1 p.m.

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