Press Release courtesy of Rutgers Athletics
Rutgers swimming and diving returns from a six-week competition hiatus to host Yale in a battle of CollegeSwimming.com Top 50 ranked teams on Friday, Jan. 12 at 4 p.m. in the Rutgers Aquatic Center.
“We have a great opportunity to swim another team currently ranked in the Top 50,” said co-head coach Jon Maccoll. “The women are coming off a high workload over the last three weeks, and I’m eager to see how they respond. I think we just may surprise a few people with the speed our women are demonstrating in practice.”
Fans are invited to stop by the Rutgers Fan Experience table to grab a 2017-18 team poster along with other Scarlet Knight giveaways. Admission is free for all spectators.
- The Scarlet Knights are polled 49th in the CollegeSwimming.com dual meet rankings with 762.40 points. The rankings are generated by comparing teams across the NCAA in a dual meet setting. Rutgers is one of 10 teams from the Big Ten in the Top 50.
- Rutgers’ last competed at the Texas Invitational from Nov. 29 through Dec. 2, when junior Vera Koprivova closed out 2017 on a high note with an appearance in the A Final of the 200-yard backstroke. Racing against a field of 48 swimmers from multiple Top 50 programs, the Czech Republic-native placed sixth overall with an NCAA B standard time of 1:55.48.
- Junior Francesca Stoppa also saw A Final action in Austin, placing eighth overall in the 200-yard butterfly in another NCAA B qualifying time of 1:58.13. The school record holder has the sixth best time in the event throughout the Big Ten this season.
- Sophomore distance specialist Francesca Bertotto split from her teammates in early December to accompany the divers at Princeton’s Big Al Open. There, Bertotto excelled in her three events and garnered fast momentum heading into 2018 with victories in the 1,650- and 500-yard freestyle events, and capped by a fifth place finish in a deep 200-yard freestyle field.
- Bertotto’s 4:46.16 in the 500-yard freestyle is a career best, an NCAA B standard and now the second best time in the 500 Free in Rutgers history – supplanting Hall of Famer Erin McIntyre and only trailing Hall of Famer Kelly Harrigan‘s 4:43.69.
- NCAA B standard qualifiers this season include Koprivova (100- and 200-yard backstroke, 400-yard individual medley), Stoppa (100- and 200-yard butterfly), sophomore Federica Greco (100- and 200-yard butterfly, 200-yard individual medley), sophomore Clare Lawlor (50- and 100-yard freestyle) and senior Larissa Neilan (200-yard breaststroke).
- Senior Addison Walkowiak continued her standout swan song with a record breaking performance at Princeton. She broke her own 1-meter diving school record twice in the same day at the Big Al Open with a score of 327.45 in the prelims, and a 332.15 while winning the event in the evening. It was her fourth 1-meter victory of the season. She would complete the clean sweep with wins on the 3-meter and platform en route to winning the sixth Big Ten Diver of the Week award of her career.
- Rutgers divers hauled in major points at the Princeton meet as junior Rachel Byrne finished second on the platform with a Zone Championships qualifying score of 228.45, while freshman Lauren Boone and junior Marin Bloise placed fourth and fifth, respectively. Byrne was never outside the Top 5 all weekend with a runner-up finish on the 1-meter and a fifth place performance in 3-meter diving.
- The Bulldogs come in at 37th in the CollegeSwimming.com dual meet rankings with 777.35 points. Yale is undefeated in dual meet format this season with a 6-0 mark while posting 271 points or more in their last three victories to begin 2018.
- Yale topped Penn 273-80 and Dartmouth 296-57 in a tri-meet on Jan. 6-7 before crushing Cornell 271-82 in a home dual on Jan. 9-10.
- McKenna Tennant is coming off a win in 3-meter diving, whiler Nikki Watters looks to challenge Walkowiak on the 1-meter board.
- Isabella Hindley leads the sprinters with NCAA B standard times of 22.46 in the 50 Free and 48.99 in the 100 Free. She’s also the team’s fastest 100-yard backstroker with a top time and NCAA B standard of 53.57, and an NCAA B standard qualifier in the 200 IM.
- Destiny Nelson and Cate Sawkins both own NCAA B cuts in the 200-yard backstroke and will compete with Rutgers’ Koprivova for the win on Friday. Nelson has also touched in cuts in the 200- and 400-yard IM.
- Cha O’Leary is atop the breaststroke with a NCAA B standard in both the 100- and 200-yard events.
- Maddie Zimmerman paces the butterfliers with an NCAA B cut in the 100 as the Bulldogs look to break 2:00 in the 200 for the first time this season.
TRAINING IN THE SUNSHINE STATE
Rutgers swimming and diving rang in the New Year during a winter training trip in the Sunshine State from Dec. 28 to Jan. 8. The swimmers spent 11 days in Fort Myers, Florida, while the divers enjoyed an eight-day stay three hours Northeast in Orlando. Read more here.
HAIL TO THE CHIEFS
Rutgers Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Patrick Hobbs announced on Dec. 6 the promotions of Frederick Woodruff and Jon Maccoll each to the position of co-head coach of the Scarlet Knights’ swimming and diving program. Woodruff, in his 25th year as head diving coach for Rutgers, had been named interim head swimming coach in November. Maccoll began his first season with the Scarlet Knights in October as the assistant swimming coach. Read more here.
RU RUNNER UP AT FRANK ELM
Rutgers claimed second place hardware at its own Frank Elm Invitational from Nov. 17-19 and honored junior Vera Koprivova as the Invitational MVP for scoring the most points over the three-day meet at Rutgers Aquatic Center. Koprivova claimed the MVP plaque with 107 points, just barely edging teammate and sophomore Federica Greco, who had 106 points, for the individual honor.
The Scarlet Knights compiled 1,447.5 points for the runner-up finish out of 14 teams, their best placing at their home invitational since 2015. Navy won the Frank Elm Invitational for the third consecutive year with 1,648 points, but Rutgers was closer than ever to the two-time defending ECAC champions.
WELCOME TO THE FAMILY
Rutgers swimming and diving announced on Oct. 30 the addition of Carmen Young to the Scarlet Knights’ support staff as the Volunteer Director of Player Development. The newly acquired position is responsible for preparing student-athletes for personal, academic and athletic development success. Young, who has swimming experience at both the competitive and coaching level, will be assisting the program with multifaceted tasks.
SWIM & DIVE POSTS FIRST PERFECT GRADUATION SUCCESS RATE SCORE
The program achieved its first perfect score of 100 in the annual GSR report by NCAA Division I, released on Nov. 8. The score reflects an average for students who entered college from 2007-10. The graduation-rate data is based on a six-year cohort prescribed by the U.S. Department of Education. The NCAA developed the Division I GSR in response to college and university presidents who wanted graduation data that more accurately reflect the mobility among all college students today.
The Scarlet Knights get a preview of the Big Ten Championships and NCAA Championship site as Ohio State hosts a tri-meet with Virginia Tech on Saturday, Jan. 20 at noon.