Rowan women’s swim wraps up regular season, gears up for the NJACs

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Bella Stefanowicz competes in a race. Stefanowicz set a personal-best in the 100 breast and 500 free. - Photo via Rowan Athletics

The Rowan women’s swim team went to Swarthmore University, where they lost both matchups. Although they didn’t win on the record book, a few players did show out.

Sophomore distance swimmer Jillian Walls set a personal season-high best in time in the 200-free event (2:02.07).

“It felt awesome,” Walls said. “This year has had its ups and downs and it’s been a long season, but that is just part of the process. Hopefully, I can bring this momentum into the NJAC.”

Walls seems to be peaking at the perfect time. Last year, the women’s team placed second in the Metropolitan Conference Championship (METs). With that second-place finish fueling them, you can tell they are locked in heading into the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) Championships. The NJAC will be a challenge for all teams regardless of the talent on the rosters.

“There are always challenges,” Walls said. “How you feel, how you don’t feel, but for our team I hope we can put our heads down and get the work done. Our goal is to finish top two and build from last season’s finish.”

The conference championships are an exciting time for both fans and athletes. You go through the struggles of everyday training in hopes of being able to showcase your talents on the biggest stage. Now with the NJACs around the corner, the team can’t wait to get started.

“The excitement level is extremely high. Last weekend against Swarthmore and Kean, we pulled out a lot of season-best times. I think our team is super stoked, and with [head coach] Elise [Fisher] returning this week, we’re excited to have her back. She is a great leader, a great coach, and she brings a lot of energy.”

Another standout from this meet was Bella Stefanowicz, as she set two season-high times this weekend. One was in the 100 breast, in which she had a time of (1:10.60), as well as the 500 free.

“It felt really good,” Stefanowicz said. “It made me feel really confident going into championships in two weeks and just knowing those are my best times this season I know I can go faster.”

Confidence is one of the most important things you can have when trying to win a championship. Luckily for Rowan, they don’t lack in the confidence department.

“I would say we are all really confident as a team,” Stefanowicz said. “The morale is really high and we have a really high energy. Personally, I am feeling very confident. Our training has been very good this season, and now I am excited to see what I can do.”

Every team in the NJAC is going to bring their A-game. With that being said, there was one team that Stefanowicz pointed out as the most competitive team of them all.

“Our biggest competitor is the University of Mary Washington. I think just trying to chase them down and beat as many Mary Washington girls as we can should help.”

Mary Washington is 6-2 overall and is coming off a blowout win this past weekend. This year’s NJAC championship is shaping up to be one of the most competitive meets we have seen in a while and will begin on Thursday, Feb. 15.

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