William and Mary hosted George Washington Saturday, Jan. 25, for its Senior Day meet. The Tribe men and women both finished their seasons with a big splash as they gained victory over the Colonials, with the final score for the women being 125-80 and the final score for the men being 138-67. Overall, the men obtained an 8-1 record for the seventh time in Tribe history and the women ended with a record of 6-4.
The men began their meet with the 200 medley relay, where seniors Colin Demers, Ian Bidwell, Jack Doherty and Ian Thompson were able to swim an astounding 1 minute, 28.28 seconds — shattering the pool and dual-meet records set by the College last week and accomplishing the eighth-fastest time in school history. Entering the 1,000 free, senior Chris Balbo swam a lifetime-best 9:21.58 to take the event for the College. Aside from breaking the previous record set two years ago by alumnus Carter Kale ’19, Balbo is also recognized as being third all-time among Tribe athletes as he finishes his astounding last regular season.
In another Tribe victory, senior Colin Wright won the 50 free with a National Collegiate Athletic Association provisional-qualifying time of 19.90 seconds — his third time under 20 seconds in a dual meet this season. Thompson followed him with 20.55 seconds and sophomore Graham Hertweck rounded out the team with 20.67 seconds. In the 200 free, freshman John O’Hara won his first collegiate race in 1:41.91. In the 200 IM, senior Ben Skopic broke the pool and dual-meet records with a time of 1:49.85. Skopic subsequently took his second win in the 200 breast, where he swam 2:05.15.
In the final event, a team of Doherty, Wright, Hertweck and Thompson swam 1:19.71 on the 200 free relay to break the pool and dual-meet records set in October — the fastest time in the Colonial Athletic Association this season and the fifth-fastest race ever at the College.
For the women, the first race of the day was the 200 medley relay where sophomore Anna Kenna, senior Lauren Freeman, junior Madeline High and sophomore Missy Cundiff won with 2:00.00. In the 1,000 free, freshman Grace Tramack took the event when she touched the wall first in 10:26.01. Entering the 200 free, junior Megan Bull won her race in 1:53.02. She had subsequent back to back wins: in the 500 free she swam 5:05.32 and in the 200 breast she won with 2:19.98.
In the last event of the day, a team of freshman Katie Stevenson, sophomore Inez Olszewski, sophomore Missy Cundiff and Kenna combined to win the 200 free relay in 1:34.81 — breaking both the pool and dual-meet records of 1:34.84 that have stood since 2014.
The Tribe will now begin to train for the post-season. The men and women will first compete at the Virginia Tech Invitational, Feb. 7-9, followed by the Colonial Athletic Association Championships Feb. 19-22 in Christiansburg, Virginia. The Tribe men have won each of the last five conference titles while the Tribe women last won back-to-back titles in 2016 and 2017 and have finished second in the past two seasons.