Rowan Women’s Swimming & Diving Wins Their Last Meet Before METS

A Rowan women's swimmer during a meet. Rowan ended their regular season undefeated in dual meets. Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022. - Multimedia Editor / Lee Kotzen

This Saturday, Feb. 5, the Rowan University women’s swimming & diving team won their Senior Day meet against the United States Merchant Marines Academy 170-130. 

This marked a big accomplishment for the team that senior Natalie Smith pointed out.

“I think it’s been awesome,” Smith said. “We went undefeated for the first time since the 94-95 season and it was awesome to be a part of that.”

Before the meet, Smith, along with four other graduate students and seniors, Veronica Alferez, Kylie Salerno, Leenah Sarhan and Erin Quaywere, were honored.

When the action started, Smith teamed up with Salerno, junior Jordan McChesney, and freshman Bella Stefanowicz to win the 200-yard medley relay.

This was only the start of their team’s success for the day. An example of this was McChesney, who went on to win another relay event and two individual events.

Stefanowicz was another key factor for the team, which led her to be named New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) Women’s Swimming Rookie of the Week once again. This just adds on to her already successful freshman campaign.

“I would say it was a very successful freshman season,” Stefanowicz said. “ I came in as a distance swimmer and a backstroker. But [Head Coach Elise Blaschke] turned me into a breaststroker and IM [Individual Medley] again and I couldn’t be happier and I’m doing so much better than I was in my senior year of high school. So I’m very happy.”

Head Coach Elise Blaschke commented on this season’s overall success and explained how it could have been different because of one meet. 

“I can easily say that if we would have swam Swarthmore [College], we would not have been undefeated because they are a super talented team, but we didn’t and so it is really exciting,” Coach Blaschke said. “I think it sets a precedent for what we’re capable of achieving. And even when we do swim [against] those really talented teams in the future, I think the team will be chasing after that same thing… this was the most perfect season highs, lows, challenges, victories, all of it.”

Rowan is currently preparing for the Metropolitan Conference Championships (METS). With this recent victory, the Profs are heading into METS 6-0-1 overall and 4-0-1 in the NJAC.

Next Thursday, Feb. 17, the Profs will travel to Rutgers in Piscataway, New Jersey to start the four-day METS events.

“I feel like we’ve been prepared throughout the season,” Smith said. “It’s exciting.”

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