March 12, 2009
Baltimore, Md. - The Loyola swimming and diving teams had a record-breaking season, finishing with plenty of new school and conference records and a 2009 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Championship for the men's team.
In February, the men's team clinched the MAAC crown for the first time since 1995. After finishing undefeated in the conference regular season, the team scored 843.50 points to take the title, ahead of Rider in second and Marist in third.
At the Championship meet, the Greyhound men had eight event champions, scored seven new MAAC records and broke the Mangione Aquatic Center pool record in the 800 Meter Relay. The team of Jacob Drannan, Ozzy Torres, Patrick Mukri and Brad Reeser swam a 6:45.87 in the relay, finishing more than two seconds faster than the previous record set by a Michael Phelps relay team in 2003.
The women's team also saw improvement at the 2009 MAAC Championships, and finished third overall with 727 points, one new MAAC record and three conference champions.
Sophomore Kim Krzaczek won the 100 Breaststroke in 1:05.21 for the Championship title and also the Loyola school record. She also swam as part of the winning 200 Medley Relay team, who set a new MAAC record with a 1:45.04 time. The foursome included Mary Henkels, Krzaczek, Caitlin Cassidy and Lauren Mari. Freshman Courtney Trivino scored the Greyhound women's third single event victory in the 200 Breast and clocked in at 2:22.43.
The men's team also had a record-breaking showing at the ECAC Championships, grabbing Loyola's first ever ECAC title with Drannan's win in the 200 I.M. He swam a 1:50.15, setting a new school record and ECAC standard. The Hounds finished with three total 2009 ECAC Champions, with wins in the 200 Medley Relay and 100 Fly to finish fourth overall. The women's team also competed and finished in seventh place.
In regular season action, the Loyola teams scored a huge win over conference rival Marist College at the fourth-annual H2Ounds Invitational. After falling behind in the first day, the women rallied behind a few first place finishes to tally enough points for their first ever victory over the Red Foxes in a dual meet. Mari swam a personal best in the meet and took first in the 100 Free and 400 free. She also recorded the second fastest swim in school history with her 24.04 time in the 50 Free.
A total of 13 freshmen and sophomore women's team members recorded Top-Five times this year and six of the same two classes currently hold the Loyola school record.
Freshman Trivino has the number one finish in the 200 I.M.(2:05.69) and the 200 Breast (2:22.43). Sophomore Cassidy is the top Loyola swimmer in the 100 Fly (56.87), 50 Free (23.91) and 100 Free (52.48) and freshman Henkels has the school record in both the 100 Back (57.17) and 200 Back (2:04.30).
The men's team is no different with 10 underclassmen setting Top-Five times in individual events this season. Six of those currently possess the school record, starting with freshman Mukri, a top finisher in distance freestyle. He has the number one spot in the 1,000 and the 1.650 Freestyle events. Sophomore Drannan competes in the Freestyle and the Individual Medley and along with his ECAC finish, he also holds the school and MAAC record in the 400 I.M. (3:57.79) and 500 Freestyle (4:31.15). Sophomore Torres also holds the school and conference records in the 100 Fly at 48.64, set at the MAAC Championships.
The 2008-09 season proved to be a step in the right direction for the Loyola teams. With young talent in the pool and a conference trophy on the shelf, it is clear that the swimming and diving squads have much to look forward to next season.