Rowan Women’s Swimming & Diving Prepares for Their First Invitationals of the Season

Rowan's Veronica Alferez during a meet earlier this season. Rowan women's swimming & diving would go 1-0-1 in meets this past weekend. Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021. - Multimedia Editor / Nick Feldman

Rowan women’s swimming & diving are coming off of a hard two-meet weekend with a win against William Paterson University and a tie with Montclair State. Swimming will get a quick break but will dive head-first into two straight weekends with invitational meets.

The Profs victory against William Paterson on Friday resulted in a score of 110-45. They then went up against the Montclair Red Hawks on Saturday, who posed a challenge for the Profs with a 150-150 tie score.

Head Coach Elise Blaschke looked at the results as ways to improve the team. 

“So, first and foremost, staying healthy during this time of the year is really important. Whether that’s mental health or physical health. This is when school gets difficult when the season is in the thick of it,” Coach Blaschke said. “And so when I’m looking back on the weekend and just seeing all the things that we did well and could have done better, I think overall, it was a great meet. We really fought hard for that tie, but there were some things I think in individual events that we could have just gotten to the wall a little bit quicker. And we would have won but I’m very happy with where we finished.” 

Senior Captain Kylie Salerno helped the Profs over the weekend capture the win and the hard-fought tie. Against William Paterson, Salerno teamed up with freshman Elizabeth Jones and Bella Stefanowicz, as well as senior Natalie Smith to win the 200-yard medley relay with a time of 1:57.43.

At Montclair State, Salerno teamed up with fellow Captains junior Jordan McChseney and graduate student Veronica Alferez along with Jones to win the 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:43.24. After getting past a hard weekend, Salerno shared her thoughts about the meets and what she can improve on. 

“Individually, I think it’s just the speed aspect, getting up for my races. I’ve been working more on my endurance,” Salerno said. “As a team, just honestly channeling that energy again that we were able to. I mean, we were projected to have the loss, so we really came back and really gave it all we had. The team was really able to get up for one another. And I think just channeling that energy and carrying it out throughout the rest of the season. I think it’s just continuing. It was awesome.”

For the swimmers, they now have a break until the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) Gompei Invitational on Dec. 2 to Dec. 4. This news came after New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) rival Ramapo College had to postpone their scheduled meet on Nov. 13, no rescheduled date has been determined. Coach Blaschke sees this break as a way to prepare the team for the rest of the season. 

“I think it gives us another day of training, but it also gives us an opportunity to continue to build as we get closer to WPI and really evaluate what’s worked so far for our first three meets,” Coach Blaschke said. “So yes, I would definitely say a blessing in disguise.”

Salerno views this break as a time to better herself in the pool and a way to keep up her competitive edge heading into December. 

“I think just honestly, racing one another in the pool and getting up for each practice and showing up and being ready,” Salerno said.

Last Friday was the first time in almost two years that the Rowan women divers also got to compete in a competition. Diving Head Coach John Morris was pleased with the team’s efforts overall. 

“I was happy that they got to dive in their first meet,” Coach Morris said. “And I think that they showed a lot of promise for this season.”

This Friday, Nov. 12, the diving team will host Seton Hall University and West Chester University at the Rowan Diving Invitational. Then on Nov. 19 and Nov. 20, they will travel to Pittsburgh to compete in the Carnegie Mellon Diving Invitational. Coach Morris expressed what aspects the Profs will train in order to be successful. 

“We are just going to try and tune up our dives,” Coach Morris said. “Really focus on our entries in the technique of everything.”

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