Today: Jun 17, 2024

Women’s Swim three-peat at NE10s

Avery MartinContributor

On Feb. 12, the Southern Connecticut State University Women’s swimming and diving team took home their third Northeast 10 (NE10) Conference Championship win in a row.  

Psychology major Paola Castillo, a freshman, won one gold and two silver metals . 

“It was a really energetic meet and it was a really fun experience. I was glad to be a part of it for my first season. I scored and got podiums in events I needed to get podiums in,” Castillo said. 

Nursing major Gracie Marsh, a junior, says her second NE10 championships were different than past years. 

Definitely a very different experience from the past because we were able to have a crowd and have people actually watching us this time,” Marsh said. “Last year there were no spectators and so there was nobody cheering last year. That is a big part of swimming so having it this year really made the environment better”. 

Castillo’s family, who are from California came to watch. 

“My family surprised me and they did come to watch. It was another level of excitement for me. I was really happy to see them and have them there to support me and cheer me on”, Castillo said. 

Marsh, like Castillo, is also from out of state. She hails from Indiana and says,“my family was able to come watch this year which was really different from last year. It was great”. 

Head coach Tim Quill was thrilled with the team’s results. I’ve been there for 25 years and this is probably one of our best conditioned and training programs. They really embraced the training this year.” Quill said.“The difference in the training showed its true colors on Saturday and Sunday when this program dominated the conference championship. That is really what they did do. That is through training that this happens.”  

Olivia Strelevitz lead the team by taking home six medals for theOwls. Justice Glasgow and Brooke Keeney each earned five, followed by Hailey Nyquist, Arianna Arturi, and Maddie Dean with four.  

Nine gold medals were won by the team. It’s an incredible feat and one Quill is proud of. “Every time is special, and this championship was no exception. We felt like we did have a very good chance to defend as conference champions this year. Our team really stepped up to the plate and performed beautifully this year,” Quill said. 

Now that NE10’s are won, the team is looking forward to the future.Right now we have one swimmer and one diver that are looking to be invited to NCAA’s. We have two other athletes who are on the outside looking in, as far as an invite is concerned,” Quill saidFollowing the NCAA meet, we are going to get back to the drawing board and we are going to start focusing on and preparing for the 2023-24 season.”  

Regarding her upcoming senior season, Marsh says “I am very excited for my last season. I am pretty close with the upcoming junior class, but it will be different not having the current senior class with us. But I am really really excited to see where the women’s team goes. I think we will still be really strong and able to dominate”.  

When asked what makes this team so special, Quill said, “The biggest difference between our program and others is that we keep the big team goals and objectives in the forefront every single day. The athletes really start to believe in it and work towards it”. 

Just because the team is now a three-peat championship-winning program doesn’t mean the work is over, says Quill. The 24 swimmers and divers will continue to train even harder in the weeks to come to reach higher results.  

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