SUNY Alfred State Closing Pool, Phasing Out Successful D-III Swim Program

by Riley Overend 8

November 17th, 2023 College, NCAA Division III, News

SUNY Alfred State is closing its swimming pool at the end of this season and phasing out the Pioneers’ swimming and diving program, becoming the seventh New-York based college swim program to bite the dust this year.

The Division III school’s six-lane pool is leaking large quantities of water, threatening structural damage to the Orvis Activities Center in which it is located. The construction arm of SUNY offered a three-year repair option, but Alfred State’s athletic department ultimately decided against it.

Instead, the pool will be drained and closed permanently when the Pioneer men and women leave for the 2024 Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference (AMCC) Championships in February.

“Due to structural concerns, Alfred State will permanently close its swimming pool after the conclusion of the current swimming and diving season,” the university said in a statement Friday afternoon. “A professional engineering study has indicated that without a years-long pool facility rebuild, operating the pool could damage the building. Plans are actively underway to facilitate supporting the Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving Program’s and Alfred State will actively work to minimize the impact on current student athletes and other pool users.”

The timing of when Alfred State’s teams will be cut has not been finalized yet, but recruiting has been frozen in the meantime. Sources told SwimSwam the plan is for the Pioneers to use the pool at nearby Alfred University during the 2024-25 season, which would likely be their last campaign before being eliminated entirely.

The Alfred State women’s swimming and diving team made history in 2020 when the squad captured the first AMCC title ever at the school — in any sport. Both the Pioneer men and women captured team crowns at the 2023 AMCC Championships, their second conference titles in program history.

“Our athletics department has made it seem hopeless to us but our program deserves to be saved and our team is willing to fight,” Alfred State junior swimmer Maddy Snayczuk told SwimSwam. 

SUNY Cobleskill also announced they were closing their pool and discontinuing their men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams in August. SUNY Cobleskill joined a growing list of New-York based college swim programs cut in 2023 including Medaille University, Cazenovia College, Buffalo State, St. Francis, Utica University — and now SUNY Alfred State, one of 64 schools in the State University of New York system.

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2 months ago

Would like to know what kind of mean spirited person would give thumbs down to previous comments. It’s a shame that they don’t repair the pool.

Paul Eaton
3 months ago

First…IOWA dropping Swimming and Diving…now Alfred State College dropping swimming and diving…Both of these tremendous programs have so much history, not to mention that I have a personal stake in each…and now…POOF…gone…

Mary Moore
3 months ago

As a parent of 3 male swimmers in NY state, this is devastating. We are familiar with the current coach who is dynamic and energetic and was set to grow this program. This school offers a unique setting for kids and the swim program was a highlight.

tea rex
3 months ago

What a gut punch. I hope the swimmers and alumni can write another chapter.

Of mudbone
3 months ago

This is so disappointing. As a member of this team my entire time there we had to battle diversity. And now they are just cutting it. So sad to see my team go down the gutter.

3 months ago

Head to their championship meet and come home to empty pool? That’s horrible. No pool to train in if they make NCAA’s?!

R.C. Weston
3 months ago

This is devastating. I took over this team in 2014 and built it through a JuCo – D3 transition from 2 guys, to a team of over 40. When I left in 2019, the program was sustainable and the very next year won their Conference Championship. This sucks. Period. Many facilities in NYS were built in the 1960-1970’s and are desperately in need of repair and to become a priority to colleges and universities. Our sport deserves better, and Swimming in NYS deserves better. I’m sorry to my former athletes who won’t be back for an Alumni meet, and for the current team who certainly deserves more from ASC.

3 months ago

Sad to see

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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